Posted: Wednesday, June 18, 2008
For Immediate Release
Barton HealthCare System
June 3, 2008
Barton Secures Federal Grant to Take Over County Clinic Patients
South Lake Tahoe When El Dorado County officials announced in March they were eliminating Family Planning Services at the County Clinic because they couldn't afford it, the Barton Community Clinic became the obvious source to provide those necessary services.
But who would pay for it?
Barton's Community Clinic already operates at a loss of nearly $1 million per year so taking on more than 2,400 additional patients without additional funding would not be fiscally responsible.
â€œWe are thrilled that federal funds were granted Friday to Barton's Community Clinic for Family Planning Services through the California Family Health Council,â€ announced Sharon Bishop, Barton Community Clinic's Practice Manager.
For the last six months of 2008, $80,000 will be available to the Barton Clinic to pay for Family Planning Services. Another $80,000 will be available in January 2009 for that fiscal year for the same services.
â€œWithout these grant funds, I don't know how we would have accommodated any additional patients than we already have,â€ said Bishop.
While the El Dorado County Clinic won't stop its Family Planning Services until the end of June, the Barton Community Clinic has already seen a sharp jump in patient visits.
â€œWe normally average about 50 PAP tests a month but last month our count was up to 112 PAPs, so we are already seeing an increase in patient loads,â€ explained Bishop.
In addition to stopping Family Planning Services, the El Dorado County Clinic is also eliminating Well Baby Exams, Women's Breast Exams and PAP Exams, all of which Barton's Community Clinic will also absorb.
Another benefit of being funded through the California Family Health Council (CFHC) is that the Barton Community Clinic will be able to purchase medical supplies through the council at reduced prices.
â€œOur IUD's will go from almost $500 each down to $195 each, thanks to the purchasing power of the CFHC,â€ Bishop said. â€œThat's a huge savings, so what the grant doesn't cover, the reduced medical supply prices will definitely help.â€
Part of the Barton's grant proposal to CFHC is to also provide comprehensive Family Planning Services to clients of three area non-profits: Tahoe Youth & Family Services, The Women's Center and Sierra Recovery Center.
The comprehensive Family Planning Services for men, women and adolescents include fertility regulation education, referrals for sterilization, emergency contraception, Level 1 infertility services, STD treatment, pregnancy diagnosis and counseling, and referrals for HIV services.
The Barton Community Clinic employees 35 highly skilled, certified health care professionals and medical support staff plus it contracts with more than a dozen physicians and specialty physicians. Barton's Community Clinic offers Urgent Care, routine medical care and Family Planning Services.