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Sun Gazette: Grant Fund to Help Free Clinic With Electronic Records Print

BY Scott McCaffrey

Created:  Tuesday, October 4, 2011 8:06AM



Among those on hand as CareFirst presented a contribution to the Arlington Free Clinic were Dels. Bob Brink and Patrick Hope, U.S. Rep. Jim Moran, clinic executive director Nancy Pallesen, CareFirst board member Michel Daley, CareFirst senior vice president Maria Tildon and County Board member Walter Tejada.


The Arlington Free Clinic has received a $95,000 grant from CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield (CareFirst), bringing to nearly $500,000 the total provided to the non-profit health-care provider by the insurer.

The new funds will help support development of the clinic’s first “electronic scheduling module,” which will be integrated into the clinic’s electronic database to support coordinated health-care services for 1,600 patients.

Unlike the clinic’s current system, the new scheduling module will provide the technology to easily schedule thousands of patient appointments.

The system will not only significantly reduce staff time needed to create the ongoing schedule of appointments, it will also allow clinic staff members to monitor individual appointments to make sure patients are scheduled for the services they need.

“CareFirst’s support has allowed us to put in place an important health information technology component,” said Arlington Free Clinic executive director Nancy Pallesen. “Our partnership with CareFirst has supported our technology efforts that will allow us to enhance patient health outcomes and maximize use of community resources.”

“We are excited to help patients at Arlington Free Clinic who are living with chronic diseases and who have challenging financial circumstances,” said Maria Tildon, CareFirst’s senior vice president of public policy and community affairs. “Our support of safety net clinics is part of our regional emphasis to assist safety net health centers that provide essential medical care.”

CareFirst has donated more than $477,000 in support of Arlington Free Clinic’s health-care initiatives since 1997.