JNYU Langone Family Health Centers in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, have received a $24 million federal grant through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 to advance COVID-19 vaccination and education and expand access to high-quality, comprehensive care in some of New York City’s most disadvantaged neighborhoods.
The 2-year grant is part of a $350 billion relief package allocated to state and local governments to help individuals and businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. The grant is the second largest awarded in New York State, and NYU Langone Family Health Centers is one of 63 federally licensed health centers that have received funding to strengthen health care community.
“Strengthening health care infrastructure in underserved communities through this visionary plan improves the overall health of New York City,” says Larry K. McReynolds, executive director of NYU Langone Family Health Centers. “This significant award recognizes the merit of each program outlined in our grant proposal and empowers us to do so much more to make a difference in thousands of lives.”
The funding bolsters a range of programs at NYU Langone Family Health Centers, including the following:
- COVID-19 Education and Vaccination: Increase community awareness, testing and treatment.
- Expansion of behavioral health personnel and services: Strengthen an overburdened network of mental health services and professionals by improving access to behavioral health screening, telehealth, and in-person treatment; improve care coordination and crisis response; support efforts to reduce substance abuse and social stress; and reach more New Yorkers who are homeless.
- Technological upgrades that impact community health: strengthen technological infrastructure, including testing equipment for chronic diseases exacerbated by COVID-19; increase access to high-speed Internet; provide computer equipment; and facilitate call center upgrades to improve NYU Langone Family Health Center’s ability to effectively assess and refer patients to services.
- Dental Assistant Education and Care: Resuming the NYU Langone Family Health Centers Dental Assistant Education Program, which was paused at the onset of COVID-19; increase enrollment to expand the pool of dental assistants serving the surrounding community; and strengthen screening and oral health services for children and adults.
- Pediatric and Adult Lung Programs: Improve screening, treatment and prevention of lung disease, and add new state-of-the-art lung care equipment.
- Social Determinants of Health: Expand community outreach programs, including job training, child care, community health education programs, access to vaccines, The Table Food Pantry, and food distribution from emergency.
- Expanding Access to Primary Care Services: Increasing COVID-19 Support Using Nurse Practitioners and Community Health Workers to Better Manage Care of High-Risk Patients with Diabetes, Hypertension, and Heart Disease other chronic illnesses, and expanding medical and behavioral health services to five more New York City shelters for homeless people.
- Support community partners: A portion of the grant dollars was intended to support local partners who provide medical and behavioral care to historically underserved populations, including at-risk youth, homeless people and community members LGBTQ+, among others; and addressing the social determinants of health.
“This grant recognizes that our community is in desperate need of resources that contribute to overall well-being and well-being, including access to high-quality health care, social, educational, and emotional support,” says Isaac. P. Dapkins, MD, chief medical officer at NYU Langone Family Health Centers. “The scale and reach of the programs supported by this award will allow us to reach more people during the pandemic and beyond.”
“Our community faces many health care challenges amplified by the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, who helped secure the federal funding. “U.S. bailout funding ensures that NYU Langone Family Health Centers continue their important work, providing crucial services during an unprecedented time.”
Primarily located in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, one of the most Medicaid-focused communities in the United States, NYU Langone Family Health Centers is a community-based program that provides high-quality primary and preventive outpatient care to adults and children, regardless of their ability to pay or health insurance status. The program serves approximately 100,000 people each year in Brooklyn and other New York neighborhoods.