A new health care clinic could be operating in the Cuyama Valley within 60 days as the result of a federal grant to Community Health Centers of the Central Coast.
Nipomo-based CHC was awarded the $551,667 federal grant from the Department of Health and Human Services to provide first-time access to primary health care for the area’s residents.
The funding was made available as a part of the Affordable Care Act, said Congresswoman Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara.
Ron Castle, CHC chief executive officer, said that since the closest medical care for Cuyama Valley residents is more than an hour’s drive away, many simply go without medical care.
He said the New Access Point Satellite clinic will provide that much-needed medical care.
At full capacity, staffing will include a family physician, a family nurse practitioner, a licensed clinical social worker and substance abuse counselor, a health educator and a community outreach worker.
In addition, it will provide access to a mobile dental team and referrals for specialty services.
CHC will lease an existing medical facility and expects to have a clinic up and running within 60 days, Capps said.
The clinic will serve residents from four counties — Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Kern and Ventura — within a 20-mile radius.
Approximately 85 percent of the clinic’s target population consists of farmworkers who are uninsured and have a low income.
CHC will partner with the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department and other health and human services organizations to provide services, Capps said.
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