The San Francisco-based Blue Shield of California Foundation has announced grants totaling nearly $7 million to support community health clinics in the state.
There are currently more than two hundred licensed community, free, and tribal clinics in California providing care to nearly three million patients — many un- or underinsured — at some eight hundred locations each year. The foundation will allocate up to $5 million of the grant to support community clinics working to meet the immediate healthcare needs of uninsured Californians, while the Tides Center will receive $1.8 million to help high-performing clinics serve some of the estimated 3.4 million people in the state expected to gain coverage as part of healthcare reform provisions set to take effect in 2014. Shasta Community Health Center will receive the remaining $138,000 to evaluate the use of electronic medical record scribes in California clinics.
"Today millions of Californians depend on community clinics for their care," said Blue Shield of California Foundation president and CEO Peter Long. "Our foundation's strategy is to back clinics' current efforts, while also supporting their bold steps to transform and seize the opportunities presented by health reform."