Heartland Health Center opens doors and access to health care

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Updated: Tue, 25 Feb 2014 09:38:31 CST

Medicaid Expansion will be debated on the senate floor.  On Monday, the Health and Human Services Committee voted to send the Wellness in Nebraska bill out of the committee and into the hands of all 49 state senators.

And that's not the only effort to expand Nebraska's health care coverage.  After months of hard work, on Monday, Grand Island's new Heartland Health Center finally opened their doors.

"This is an important step forward to filling that gap because what we have now is a clinic where people can come whether they have insurance or not. And so folks with medicaid, medicare, private insurance, no insurance, whatever can come here," said Teresa Anderson, Director of the Central District Health Department. 

Thanks to a federal grant, Heartland Health won't be turning any patients away.  Instead, sliding fees will be determined based on income and family size-- helping Obamacare's goal of establishing patient-centered medical homes and strengthening the relationship between patients and their physicians.

"Somebody that you go to all the time, or a team. So maybe Dr. Jones is too busy today to see you or Dr. Jones isn't here today, but you know what, his partner is going to be here to see you. And so they kind of know the whole staff, they know the nurse, the nurse gets to know them. We kind of know their history," said Terri Ford Wolfgram, Heartland Health Center CEO. 

Already the health center has a physician and a nurse practitioner on staff.

And even though they're just now opening the doors, they've already got their eyes on the future.  With plans of adding a dental clinic in the next year and even a satellite clinic in Hastings in the coming years.