Community health center expands services with grant

·1 min read

Jul. 21—The Oneonta Community Healthcare Center recently announced a $6,600.00 award from the Community Foundation of Otsego County.

According to a media release, the award was issued in response to a proposal submitted by the health care center to expand current programming for the uninsured and underinsured adults served by the center. Programmatic expansions are in the areas of increased critical dental services and the development and delivery of mental health services using the telemedicine delivery model. The award will also allow the center to cover the costs of some related administration associated with the inclusion of those efforts, the release said.

OCHC has been serving adult patients who are uninsured since late 2007, accorfding to the release. The program was founded through the combined efforts of the Oneonta Unitarian Universalist Church, with Dr. Benjamin Friedell establishing the early programmatic effort that made primary healthcare available to many underserved adults, all of whom are below 200% of the current poverty guidelines. The core staff of health professionals provide primary care free of cost to eligible adults.

Within the last several years, the need to access dental services for patients has increased, the release said, and the organization has secured several ongoing gifts and grants to cover the costs of services provided by a few area dentists.

More recently, staff members have discovered that some of the patients require mental health counseling and, in rare cases, medications for conditions such as depression and anxiety, the release said. The center is in the process of developing a system for screening and provision of those services.

For more information about OCHC visit or call 607-433-0300.