U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado Visits the Institute for Family Health’s Kingston Family Health Center
From left to right: Helaina Melendez, Melissa Martinez, Dr. Wesley Ho, Michelle Penny, Susanne Callahan, Rep. Antonio Delgado, Dr. Neil Calman, Steve Kelley and Heather Mason
Kingston, NY (November 15, 2019) – U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado of New York’s 19th Congressional District visited Kingston Family Health Center, a federally-qualified health center (FQHC) in Kingston, New York on November 11, 2019. Rep. Delgado, a strong supporter of policies that promote affordable health care, met with leadership and staff from the Institute for Family Health (the Institute) to discuss community health needs in Kingston, New Paltz, Ellenville, Hyde Park and beyond. The Institute operates six health centers serving these and nearby areas, all of which are in Rep. Delgado’s district.
During the meeting, Rep. Delgado spoke with Dr. Neil Calman, president and CEO of the Institute for Family Health; Dr. Wesley Ho, medical director for the Kingston site; Steve Kelley, an Institute board member and the CEO of Ellenville Regional Hospital; Susanne Callahan, VP for planning and community engagement; and Michelle Penny, VP for clinical operations, among others. They discussed community health center funding, the Teaching Health Center Residency Program, and dental care services.
“Access to quality, affordable health care is one of the most critical issues facing families across upstate,” Delgado said. “I’m thankful to the leadership and medical staff at the Kingston Family Health Center for their work to provide primary care, behavioral health, and dental care to families in our region. My visit underscored the urgent need for more primary care physicians in rural communities, the impact of skyrocketing prescription drug costs, and the critical work our health centers do every day to address the opioid epidemic in our region. I’ll keep working to ensure community health centers receive the critical federal funding they need so that all upstate families have access to affordable care.”
Rep. Antonio Delgado was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018. After winning his first term last year, he has distinguished himself as an advocate for accessible health care in his district by serving on numerous health-related task forces, including the Congressional Diabetes Caucus and the Affordable Prescription Drug Task Force. He also supported the Institute’s recent application for HRSA Oral Health Infrastructure Grant funds to purchase new dental x-ray machines in Kingston and Ellenville, as well as upgrade the Institute’s electronic dental record system.
The Kingston Family Health Center, located at 1 Family Practice Drive, is just one of the Institute-operated health centers in Rep. Delgado’s district. The other health centers include the Family Practice Center of Hyde Park, the Ellenville Family Health Center, the Family Health Center of Port Ewen, the Ob/Gyn and Specialty Care Center of Kingston and the New Paltz Family Health Center. The six centers offer primary and preventive care for people of all ages; most offer mental health care onsite; and the Kingston and Ellenville sites also offer dental care. In addition to delivering these essential health services, the Institute collaborates on community health promotion projects throughout the region aimed at addressing pressing community health needs, such as bringing physicians to underserved areas through the teaching health centers program and other workforce development initiatives.
Dr. Neil Calman, president and CEO of the Institute for Family Health, discussed the importance of community health centers with Rep. Delgado, commenting that “FQHCs are especially critical for those who are low-income, uninsured, or living in communities with limited access to care.” Regarding the health professional shortage in New York State, Dr. Calman said, “The Institute realized that if we wanted to be sure there were enough doctors to care for patients in the communities we serve, we had to grow our own, so now we operate three residency training programs, graduating 23 family physicians each year.”
The Kingston Family Health Center, like all Institute health centers, provides care to all, regardless of their ability to pay or immigration status. The health center accepts all types of insurance, including Medicare, Medicaid, marketplace (“Obamacare”) plans, private insurance, or no insurance. Kingston Family Health Center is located at 1 Family Practice Drive, Kingston, New York, 12401. To make an appointment, call (845) 338-6400.