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ACA Sends $1.3 Million to South Dakota for Sliding-Fee Clinics

Here's something else that Rep. Kristi Noem, Senator John Thune, and every Republican running for Sen. Tim Johnson's seat would take away from South Dakota by repealing the Affordable Care Act: a $1.3 million grant for increased health care services in Yankton and Fort Pierre.

Here's Nathan Johnson's account of the good that ACA money will do in Yankton:

A FQHC is a community-based organization that provides comprehensive primary care and preventive care on a sliding fee scale for qualified uninsured and underinsured patients.

...The Union County Health Foundation, which operates as allPOINTS Health Services and has FQHCs in Elk Point and Alcester, will expand into Yankton and was given $858,333 for the task. It will be called the allPOINTS: Yankton Clinic and will include a family medicine physician, a dentist and some mid-level nurses.

“This is going to double the size of our organization,” said Brad Bertrand, chief executive officer of allPOINTS Health Services. “What this funding is going to do is get the facility in Yankton up and running. It will allow us to buy equipment, hire people and get network infrastructure in place.”

...The clinic will be located on the third floor of the Avera Sacred Heart Hospital (ASHH) Professional Office Pavilion and Education Center, and allPOINTS now has 120 days to open the facility [Nathan Johnson, "Health Center to Serve the Uninsured and Underinsured in Area," Yankton Press & Dakotan, updated 2013.11.08].

Everyone who works at AllPoints, please remember that if you vote for anyone other than Rick Weiland for Senate, you're voting to cut your budget and serve fewer people. Folks in Yankton, please remember that if you vote for anyone other than Rick Weiland for Senate, you're voting to make it harder for you and your neighbors to get affordable health care.

The ACA is providing $151 million in health center grants nationwide this fiscal year to expand health care access for 1.26 million Americans.


  1. Deb Geelsdottir 2013.11.11

    ACA is doing a great job in overcoming relentless sabotaging by Republicans.

  2. Roger Cornelius 2013.11.11

    Community health centers have been a long time passion of mine. I had the fortune to serve 9 years on the board of directors for the Community Health Center of the Black Hills.

    One of the greatest obstacles we had to overcome was the stereotype that we were a "free clinic" that served only the poor. The beauty of community health centers is that they in fact serve all segments of society and accept all forms of insurance. No one is ever turned away because of inability to pay.

    If people are truly tired of being gouged by the medical industry, community health centers are your answer. They offer below standard charges for most procedures and their prescription drug programs cannot be compared to any other.

    If ACA had not passed or was repealed, Black Hills are clients would have suffered a devastating blow and a community health center that would have had to scale back critical healthcare needs.

  3. Cranky Old Dude 2013.11.11

    $151 million? Wow, that will give them (1.26 M) a leg up on buying a bottle of aspirin at today's prices. $151M aint even gonna pay for the computers and office furniture it will take to "administrate" this.

  4. Deb Geelsdottir 2013.11.11

    The states that did not build their own health care website and accept Medicare money are doing such a grave disservice to their citizens. MN and Wisconsin make an excellent apples to apples comparison. Both states abound in economic and social similarities. Each state went in completely opposite directions with health care options. WI, led by Rep. Gov.Scott Walker, denied citizens every opportunity to take advantage of health care help. Walker did not allow Wisconsinites to build a health care exchange website, no training for health care advocates, no Medicare, etc. In MN, Dem. Gov. Mark Dayton enthusiastically pushed every option that would benefit Minnesotans. Every single thing.

    Results: WI pays at least double, and in some cases triple the premiums MN pays. Many thousands in MN have registered and signed up for health care on the MNsure site.

    What Walker's large scale sabotage got for the citizens of WI was all negatives. Less coverage, higher costs, diminished access, more people with no coverage.

    That's the endlessly repeated story of Obamacare, lots of pain in the states led by saboteurs, significant easing of health care struggles in states led by governors who serve their people.

  5. caheidelberger Post author | 2013.11.12

    Cranky, the Union County Health Federation isn't sneezing at that money. And I'll bet Roger, with his important experience, could provide us with all sorts of examples of how community health centers are able to deliver more health care bang for the buck.

    By the way, President George W. Bush doubled the number of community health centers.

  6. Roger Cornelius 2013.11.12

    As you may recall, President Obama included in ACA a big push for community health centers. Unfortunately the Congress that wrote or didn't write different aspects of the law, made the criteria for start ups and expansion too competitive for smaller organizations to qualify.

    As it is, ACA is still beneficial to community health centers, now being able to provide services for better preventative healthcare, prenatal care and geriatrics and much more.

    President Bush did expand community health centers two fold and was a believer in what they did. Also. his prescription drug plan when expanded to community health centers was of particular benefit users. The prescription drug plan covered more drugs and offered affordable co-pays to users.

    Despite an extremely crammed work place and clinics scattered through out Rapid City. the clinic has in excess of 12,000 regular users.

    Remember, you do not need to be from the immediate Rapid City area or Black Hills to take advantage of the center, users come from Nebraska and Wyoming and many rural areas of South Dakota.

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