MHC Designated as Federally Qualified Health Center Look-Alike


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BRISTOL, VT – Oct. 3, 2013 – The Five-Town Health Alliance is pleased to announce Mountain Health Center in Bristol has been officially designated as a Federally Qualified Health Center Look-Alike (FQHC-LAL) by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Health Resources and Services Administration. “Senator Bernie Sanders’ commitment to making quality health care available to all Vermonters, along with the support of Governor Peter Shumlin and Representatives Michael Fisher and Dave Sharpe, helped us achieve this important designation,” said Jill Mackler, chair of Five-Town Health Alliance’s board of directors. “We’re also grateful to Bi-State Primary Care Association for their long support and assistance along every step of the journey.”

Senator Sanders, upon hearing the news offered his commendation, “I congratulate the Five-Town Health Alliance on the health center in Bristol receiving a formal designation as a Federally Qualified Health Center Look Alike. This is a major step forward toward improving primary health care in Addison County and providing affordable prescription drugs. It also moves us a step closer to the Five-Town Health Alliance becoming the ninth Federally Qualified Health Center in Vermont with all the benefits that go with that designation. I look forward to continuing to work with this wonderful organization.”

Mountain Health Center provides access to primary and preventative health care services, including medical, dental, and behavioral health care for people of all ages. “Each patient chooses a health care provider to oversee all their care,” according to Medical Director Marian Bouchard, MD. “We make referrals to specialists, coordinate care, and also work to provide in-home support to our patients when needed.” Including Dr. Bouchard, Mountain Health Center has four physicians, a nurse practitioner, a physician assistant, a social worker and dietician, six licensed or registered nurses, an executive director, and administrative staff.

The Look-Alike designation makes it possible for Mountain Health Center to offer a sliding fee scale to uninsured and underinsured patients meeting federal guidelines based on income. “We applied for this status because we thought it was important to provide health care to anyone who walked in the door, regardless of their ability to pay,” said Nancy Marnellos, former chair of Five-Town Health Alliance. “Our new Look-
Alike status gives us the ability to do that and much more.”

“Within the next several months, Mountain Health Center looks forward to a future partnership with Mountain Health Family Dentistry and in addition to that expects to participate in a federal pharmacy program that will lower the cost of prescriptions for eligible patients through a collaboration with local pharmacies,” according to Executive Director Martha Halnon, CPC, CMPE. Mountain Health Center is open to new patients. For more information or to make an appointment, please contact Mountain Health Center, 74 Munsill Avenue, Suite 100, Bristol VT 05443: 802-453-5028.

The Five-Town Health Alliance (5THA) was formed in 2008 for the purpose of improving medical, behavioral and dental access for the community. The mission of the Five-Town Health Alliance is to strengthen our communities by improving the health of all our neighbors by providing health care with skill, compassion and respect; lowering the barriers to affordable care; and delivering broad-based services including preventative, dental, mental and primary health care.

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