Passage of budget deal restores funding for Jordan Valley Community Health, other clinics

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Springfield, MO Hundreds of families across the Ozarks depend on the services of Jordan Valley Community Health. In turn, the health system depends upon certain federal funding sources.

"We come here for the dental, and I use the walk-in clinic, said Alissa Weathersby.

Alissa says, without Jordan Valley, her family experience financial challenges paying for medical care.

"Not so good because it is kind of expensive and we can't afford insurance right now for me. These guys have insurance through here," she explained.

Dr. Nick Pfannenstiel stated, "We are serving a niche that the other larger health centers or larger health care delivery models are not finding."

The clinic was set to lose $4-million dollars- a tenth of its operating funds. The loss was due to inaction by Congress to renew funding for community health centers nationwide.
However, included in last week's federal budget bill was a two-year restoration of funding for community health centers. Not only was the money restored, it increased by $200 million for this year, $400 million the next. Both Missouri Senators Claire McCaskill and Roy Blunt voted in favor of the budget.

"It really, in Missouri specifically, it is touching the lives of over a half a million individuals in Missouri that depend on their care at
community health centers and it is being able to continue providing that service line to those individuals," said Pfannenstiel

Another positive turnaround was Congress' six-year extension of the Children's Health Insurance Program. Millions of kids would have lost health coverage- including more than 300 young patients here at Jordan Valley.

"If that funding were to go away or wasn't renewed, then it would be an immediate impact on those individuals,' stated Pfannenstiel.