Despite clear need, one of the most effective pipelines for producing primary care physicians could end May 22
(East Bay Times) A recent workforce report from the UCSF HealthForce Center projects that by 2030, California will experience a 12% to 17% greater demand for primary care medical services than what currently exists.
This need will be further exacerbated by a projected decrease in the number of primary care physicians in the state due to increasing retirements of older physicians and fewer entering younger physicians. This shortage will not be completely addressed by increasing numbers of primary care nurse practitioners and physician assistants.
Despite this clear need, one of the most effective pipelines for producing primary care physicians – the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program – could end on May 22 unless Congress votes to extend it. Support from Congress and President Trump is essential to ensure that we keep this program alive for the medical residents, communities and patients who benefit.
The Teaching Health Center (THC) program was created as part of the Affordable Care Act to increase the residency training of primary care physicians in the community, especially in under-served communities. While most residencies are in hospitals, THCs are based in the community, most often in Federally Qualified Health Centers whose main purpose is to provide care for under-served populations, such as the uninsured and those covered by MediCal. Read more >>
(CHroniCles) The National Population Projections released by the U.S. Census Bureau project that by 2034, there will be 77.0 million people age 65 years and older, or one-and-a half times as many as were reported in 2016 (49.2 million). For the first time, adults will outnumber the nation’s children under the age of 18. By 2030, 1 in every 5 U.S. residents will be of retirement age.
As the country prepares for this demographic milestone, community health centers will be challenged to care for greater numbers of older adults, with more complex and pressing health care needs. Data from the UDS show that health centers are already responding to this demographic shift. In 2018, older adults accounted for 9.6% of those served by community health centers, or 2.6 million people. [HRSA UDS]. Reflecting this shift, Medicare is an increasingly important payer for health centers, with the number of health center Medicare patients doubling from 2005-2014. In 2018, 2.7 million health center patients, or 9.7%, were covered by Medicare and an additional 1 million (3.7%) were Medicare/Medicaid dual-eligible. [HRSA UDS].
To get a bird’s-eye view of how several health centers are meeting new demands for care, we reached out to colleagues in California, Vermont and Illinois known for elder-focused care. While each has unique programs and faces local challenges, each has found a way to forge connections with elders in their communities and to offer older patients high-quality, empathic care. [Ed: With so much going on at health centers as demographics and approaches change, the next article in this series will look specifically at PACE, or Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly.]
LifeLong Medical Care (Berkley, CA)
LifeLong Medical Care was focused from the outset on addressing the unmet need for health services in Berkeley’s senior community. Dr. Marty Lynch, who joined LifeLong in 1980, is the center’s Executive Director and co-founder of NACHCs Sub-committee on Healthy Aging. He explained that the health center was founded by a group of Gray Panthers, senior advocates who realized that the area’s growing low-income aging population did not have access to necessary medical services and decided to develop a place where older adults could receive support and quality health care. The Over 60 Health Center was there for the “folks who weren't always welcome in the normal private practice offices. “Folks who were poor maybe they didn't speak English, maybe were African American whatever it might be and they didn't fit in and the doctors didn't want to see them”Folks who were poor maybe they didn't speak English, maybe were African American whatever it might be and they didn't fit in and the doctors didn't want to see them.”
(Laurie Udesky, Aces Connection) Nearly two years ago, a team of colleagues at LifeLong Medical Care jumped at the opportunity to integrate practices based on ACEs science to prevent and heal trauma in their patients when it joined a two-year learning collaborative known as the Resilient Beginnings Collaborative (RBC). RBC began in 2018 and includes seven safety net organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. (Here’s a link to a report about the RBC.)
To join the RBC, LifeLong Medical Care — which has 16 primary care health centers in Alameda, Contra Costa and Marin Counties — and the other collaborative teams had to agree to introduce all staff members to ACEs science and trauma-informed practices. LifeLong went full steam ahead with a 2.5-hour introductory training for more than 100 employees who work at its clinics that serve pediatric patients. Trauma Transformed, a program of the East Bay Agency for Children in Oakland, CA, did the training in October and November 2018.
In February 2019, brainstorming around workflow was provided for staff at the LifeLong Howard Daniel Health Center in Oakland, CA, where LifeLong plans to pilot ACEs screening in newborns to five-year-olds, said Dr. Omoniyi Omotoso, the pediatric lead at LifeLong Medical Care, who led Read more >>
Message from LifeLong Board President James Johnson Jr. Announcing New CEO
Dear LifeLong Medical Care Friends:
On behalf of the LifeLong Board of Directors, I am pleased to announce the selection of David B. Vliet, BHA, MBA, as our new Chief Executive Officer (CEO). His official start date will be Jan 22, 2020. We are very excited to welcome David to the LifeLong family!
As many of you know, Marty Lynch, PhD, is set to step down from the position of CEO at the end of January 2020 after almost 40 years. Over those 40 years, LifeLong grew from its flagship clinic, the Over 60 Health Center, to a robust network of 16 primary care clinics, three dental clinics, four school-based health centers, two urgent-care centers, and home-based services in supportive housing sites across Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. LifeLong proudly provides integrated primary care, behavioral health, and dental care to low-income families, children, older adults, individuals experiencing homelessness, and immigrants.
David comes to LifeLong with a wealth of experience in the community health center movement, most recently as the CEO of Tiburcio Vasquez Health Center (TVHC) in Hayward, CA. For more than seven years, David has led a strong team at TVHC, home to seven primary care clinics, three dental clinics, and three school-based health centers staffed by 300 health professionals.
From 2002 through 2012, prior to assuming the role of CEO at TVHC, David led Central Texas Community Health Centers, first as Chief Operating Officer for three years followed by seven years as CEO. Central Texas Community Health Centers is one of the largest community health center systems in the State of Texas.
“I’m thrilled and honored to be joining LifeLong Medical Care, a community-driven, widely respected, nationally recognized, and innovative Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) serving the East Bay and beyond for over 40 years,” David said. “Every day, LifeLong’s Board and staff demonstrate their commitment to improve the lives and health outcomes of individuals and families who are facing significant challenges, including people who are elderly, homeless, immigrants, and low-income. I look forward to being a part of this remarkable team, and I’m excited by the opportunity to lead them into the future as we tackle the many challenges in accessing high-quality health care.”
Says Marty Lynch: “I’m totally excited to have David taking over as our new CEO at LifeLong. David has been a friend and well-respected colleague for many years and is a perfect choice to build on LifeLong’s current work and take us into the future. He is fully committed to the health of everyone in our community. Please join me in welcoming David to LifeLong Medical Care.”
David is an active board member of the Community Health Center Network (CHCN) and currently serves as board chair. He is currently chair-elect for the California Primary Care Association (CPCA) Board of Directors and he serves on the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) Board where he co-leads an effort to promote diversity and support leaders from under-represented ethnic groups throughout NACHC.
David has lived and traveled in Latin America and he is fluent in Spanish. David also brings to LifeLong his amazing musical prowess as a performing blues and jazz musician.
This was a tall challenge to identify a successor to our longtime CEO, and we look to David’s leadership on behalf of our local communities and for underserved people across the nation.
James Johnson, Jr.
Board Chair, LifeLong Medical Care
At a clinic in Oakland, patients who once lived on the streets are helping to improve care for the unsheltered
(CHCF) It’s just after noon on the third Wednesday of the month, and at the Trust Health Center in downtown Oakland, California, patients are sharing pizza around a conference table. Meet the Trust Partners, the clinic’s patient-based board of advisers. The role of the eight-member board is to provide patient feedback to assure that the clinic stays meaningfully connected to the community it serves.
One of the partners, William Terry, tells the group about the years he was homeless, living in a run-down minivan. The unregistered van was such a wreck that whenever he moved it for street cleaning, it left a trail of oil. In eight and a half years, he never got a ticket. “I should be in the Guinness Book of Records,” he said with a laugh.
Terry can reflect with humor on his time living on the streets because now he has an apartment, thanks largely to the Trust Health Center. This Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC), which is operated by LifeLong Medical Care, opened in November 2015 to serve adult residents of Alameda County who have no home or who are at risk of losing their home. LifeLong provides primary care services, mental health care, and social services support.
Lifelong has a separate governing board overseeing the entire organization that meets the Health Resources & Services Administration’s requirement that the majority of a health center’s board must be its own patients. By law, patients must hold a majority on Lifelong’s governing board. Trust Partners offers an additional way to obtain specialized input from patients who have lived on the streets.
Marty Lynch, PhD, Executive Director and CEO of LifeLong Medical Care for the past 38 years, was recently presented with 2019 Outstanding Achievement Award by the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC).
Lynch received the national award for “excellence and commitment to America’s Health Centers and the people they service.” NACHC President and CEO Tom Van Coverden presented the award to Lynch at the 2019 Community Health Institute and Expo.
“I’m so very honored to receive this award and to have had the opportunity to contribute to the health of the communities served by health centers,” said Lynch.
Saying he had one of the “luckiest jobs ever,” Lynch noted that through collaboration with the Alameda Health Consortium and the California Primary Care Association, LifeLong Medical Care has been able to accomplish “amazing things together” to improve the health of their communities.
Lynch spent most of his life working with aging populations and the homeless. “When I started at LifeLong, the elderly were 5% to 6% of the community health center population. Now it’s 10%,” he said. Nationwide, that translates into nearly 3 million low-income older people who get excellent health care in the community health center system.
“I’m so proud of us for doing that,” he said.
Community health centers continue to face challenges, among them immigrant health, women’s health, and an epidemic of homelessness. But the biggest threat of all, he said, is climate change. Air pollution, mostly caused by carbon pollutants, aggravate a range of ailments including everything from heart attacks to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, stroke, lung cancer, type 2 diabetes, and pneumonia. And low-income communities served by health centers will suffer the greatest health consequences, not only from unhealthy air, but also from searing heat, increased wildfires, high winds, and flooding that come with climate change.
Lynch got his start at the Over 60 Health Center, which later became LifeLong Medical Care. He co-founded the Healthy Aging Subcommittee of the National Association of Community Health Centers and is past chair of the California Primary Care Association. He was recently appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom to serve on the California Master Plan on Aging Advisory Committee. Lynch also serves on the boards of the Oakland PACE health plan for disabled elders and the Alameda Alliance for Health Plan that serves Medi-Cal recipients.
Lynch received his Ph.D. in Social and Behavioral Sciences from the University of California, San Francisco, and an MPA from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.
In addition to health administration, Lynch is involved in public policy and research activities related to health access for the uninsured, long-term care models, chronic care, and financing care for disabled populations. Lynch also is a Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley.
VIDEO (Marty starts @ 8:20)
Marty Lynch, PhD, Executive Director/CEO of LifeLong Medical Care, has been appointed to the California Master Plan for Aging Stakeholder Advisory Committee. The advisory committee will work across sectors to develop a road map to build environments where Californians can grow old safely, with dignity and independence.
“This is our time to come together to build an age-friendly California,” said California Health and Human Services (CHHS) Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly “Government cannot do this alone — I challenge all Californians to join us in building a California Dream that is inclusive of our older and disabled neighbors.”
Said Lynch: “I welcome the opportunity to collaborate with others across the State to find ways to build a community that supports and cares for our older adults no matter what their income or immigration status.”
“The Golden State is getting grayer and we need to be ready for the major population changes headed our way,” stated Governor Newsom in announcing the Master Plan for Aging. “An aging population will introduce new opportunities for economic and community growth but also drive increased health and long-term care costs. We need a plan that brings everyone to the table – local communities, labor, private sector and philanthropy – to help us understand what’s coming and guide us toward taking better care of older Californians.”
Lynch started his career at LifeLong’s Over 60 Health Center in Berkeley in 1982. He has since grown LifeLong Medical Care, a Federally Qualified Health Center, to include 16 health centers, mental health services, three Dental Centers, an Adult Day Health Center, four School-Based Health Centers, a Supporting Housing Program, and Urgent Care services serving Alameda, Contra Costa, and Marin Counties.
Dr. Lynch co-founded the Elderly Sub-Committee of the National Association of Community Health Centers and is past Chair of the California Primary Care Association. He recently served on the state task force to examine policy changes necessary for the integration of primary care and mental health services and worked to develop a California plan for Alzheimer’s disease.
The San Pablo Lytton Casino held the 16th Annual Charity Golf Tournament, benefiting LifeLong Brookside Health and Immediate/Urgent Care Centers, on October 28 at the Richmond Country Club with 156 golfers participating. Thank you to everyone who made this event a real success.
LifeLong Brookside Health and Immediate/Urgent Care Centers are grateful to the following organizations for their generous underwriting of San Pablo Lytton Casino’s Annual Charity Golf Tournament.
A Special Thank You to the following Individuals and/or Organizations for Their Kind Donations
Adobe Associates, Inc.
Ainsworth Game Technology
Alliant Insurance Services, Inc.
Alpha Gaming, Inc.
Analytical Environmental Services
Bay Area Beverage
Bay Cities Produce
City of San Pablo
Community Clinic Consortium
Curiale Wilson, LLP
Division Nine/K&A Builders, Inc.
East Bay Physical Therapy
Evergood Fine Foods
Everi Games Inc.
Technology America, Inc.
Hillhouse Construction Co., Inc.
International Game Technologies (IGT)
Jackson & Son Plumbing
Kendall-Jackson Wine Estate & Gardens
Lappert’s Coffee & Ice Cream
Leavitt United Insurance Services
LifeLong Medical Care
Marshall’s of El Cerrito
Maui Jim Sunglasses
Meczka Marketing Research Consulting
Mesa Energy Systems, Inc.
Mutual of America
Oliver & Company, Inc.
Pear Street Bistro
Pro Guard Security Services
PT Gaming LLC
Regal Wine Co.
Richmond Country Club
Rock Wall Wine Company
San Pablo Lytton Casino
Southern Wine & Spirits
Suhr Risk Services
Tier 1 Electrical
Tri-Quest Builders & Developers, Inc.
Wareham Development Corporation
Wayne’s Vending (Performance Live)
(UCSF) — It was a cold and rainy day when the doctor found Alvin on the streets of Oakland, months out of jail, off his psychiatric medications and considering taking his own life.
“I was at my wit's end. I was tired of getting high. I was tired of not being on my medication, not being normal,” he said.
Alvin had become a dark statistic: one of nearly 3,000 people living unsheltered in Oakland and one of the 45 percent who report problems with psychiatric or emotional conditions.
When psychiatrist Aislinn Bird, MD, MPH, and her street medicine team discovered Alvin on that gloomy day, he also became another statistic: one of the 14 percent of homeless in San Francisco and Alameda counties who receive mental health services.
Bird is the staff psychiatrist at the LifeLong Medical TRUST Clinic, which provides physical and mental health care for the homeless in downtown Oakland, and the founder of the StreetHealth program, part of Alameda County Health Care for the Homeless. Every weekday morning, a team of doctors and social workers visit homeless encampments, handing out basic necessities like clean socks and granola bars, but also medications to treat depression, anxiety and nightmares from post-traumatic stress disorder. People aren’t always receptive, but the team comes every day offering help, hoping to build enough trust that people will visit the clinic for care.
(KPIX 5) — People have been lining up at hardware stores and other locations in the Bay Area to snap up face masks to minimize their intake of unhealthy air. But the N95 respirators, so called because of their ability to filter at least 95 percent of airborne particles, need to fit well in order to work.
Some people use one instead of two straps because they are uncomfortable. But doctors are saying that’s a big no-no, and say use both straps, pinch the metal on top of the nose, and try to seal the mask around the face. If it’s done right, there should be no gaps.
“We’re supposed to breathe in oxygen and nitrogen. Now you also have this particulate matter that your lungs do not like. And once you breathe those chemical irritants in, they’re distributed throughout your body,” said Dr. Desmond Carson, Medical Director for wellness center LifeLong Medical Care. “Those irritants are not supposed to be in your body and that’s why people get headaches.”
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- 2018 Annual Charity Golf Tournament
- 2019 Annual Gala
- 2020 Annual Gala
- East Bay Community Recovery Project Joins LifeLong Medical Care’s Family of Services, July 9
- Keep Kids Safe and Healthy This Vacation Season, June 15, 2018
- Oakland NAACP Hosts Phenomenal Women Awards, March 30, 2018
- All Are Welcome: Health Clinics Work to Allay Fears of Immigrant Patients and their Families, Feb 22, 2018
- Richmond William Jenkins Health Center groundbreaking celebrated, Feb 9, 2018
- Richmond: New health center to be named for pioneering doctor, Feb 2, 2018