Community health clinics will open next year in northwest Omaha and Grand Island with a total of $1.03 million in federal Affordable Care Act money.
OneWorld Community Health Centers will receive $216,667, most of which will be used to renovate a building at a location that hasn’t been disclosed. OneWorld’s head, Andrea Skolkin, said Thursday an agreement hasn’t been finalized with the landlord.
Nevertheless, it’s certain that OneWorld’s reach will expand. Early this year, OneWorld, which is headquartered in South Omaha, opened a clinic in southwest Omaha at 4101 S. 120th St. OneWorld also has a Plattsmouth clinic and four school-based clinics.
Federal community health centers generally serve low-income and uninsured people, with charges based on a sliding scale. The grants expand services with the expectation that more people will have insurance under the Affordable Care Act and will use it for preventive care and other medical services.
Grand Island will be home to Nebraska’s seventh community health center. Two are in Omaha, and there is one each in Lincoln, Columbus, Norfolk and Gering.
Teresa Anderson, director of the Central District Health Department in Grand Island, said the new health center in her city will open early next year with $812,500 in federal Department of Health and Human Services money.
The clinic initially will co-exist at the location of another Grand Island medical clinic called Central Health Center.
Anderson said her community has planned and worked for six years toward approval of its own community health center. Community leaders applied more than two years ago and submitted another application to the federal government in February, she said.
Some people in her region have traveled for medical care to the community health center in Columbus, about 65 miles from Grand Island, she said. Others didn’t get medical care or used hospital emergency rooms, she said.
The federal Department of Health and Human Services announced Thursday that 236 community health center programs nationwide will receive $150 million.