San Fernando Community Clinic

LOS ANGELES (CNS) – L.A. Care, a health insurance plan for Los Angeles County’s neediest residents, announced more than $2 million in grants today to help address the shortage of non-physician certified and licensed professionals at a dozen clinics that serve low-income communities.

“Each clinic will receive up to $175,000 to help them improve patient access through increased staffing, specifically workers who share a racial or ethnic background with the patients they are serving,” L.A. Care CEO John Baackes said in a statement. “The lack of diversity among health care staff hinders efforts toward health equity. L.A. Care is working to close the gap on health disparities that have existed for far too long.”

According to L.A. Care, the pandemic worsened a nursing shortage in the state. UC San Francisco estimates that California faces a shortage of about 36,000 licensed nurses.

San Fernando Community Health Center is one of the recipients of the Tranquada Initiative grants.

“The funding will allow SFCHC to hire a registered nurse and a certified community health worker to further strengthen our primary care team,” Audrey Simons, CEO of SFCHC, said in a statement. “The focus of our project is to increase the percentage of patients achieving blood pressure control, increase screening for chronic kidney disease and reduce obesity among patients, particularly those with underlying medical conditions. Integrating both a dedicated RN and CCHW into the team will allow better communication with patients and better quality care.”

The awardees — located in and around Los Angeles — in the 14th round of Tranquada Initiative grants are:
   — Asian Pacific Health Care Venture;
   — Garfield Health Center;
   — Harbor Community Health Centers;
   — Los Angeles Christian Health Center;
   — Northeast Valley Health Corporation;
   — QueensCare Health Centers;
   — San Fernando Community Health Center
   — Southern California Medical Center;
   — St. John’s Community Health;
   — The Achievable Foundation;
   — Venice Family Clinic; and
   — Via Care Community Health Center.

The publicly operated L.A. Care health plan insures more than 2 million Medi-Cal patients and other low-income recipients.

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