On October 1, 2019, Geisinger Kistler Clinic and Geisinger Hazleton will become new entities called CommunityCare Kistler Clinic and CommunityCare Hazleton.
Please rest assured that your providers and staff will remain the same, and so will the hours of operation and services available.
We are making these changes so these locations can be designated as Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and operate under the supervision of the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Because more than 60 percent of our patients have Medicare or Medicaid coverage, we will follow the FQHC model, which will benefit our patients and communities by:
- Offering disease management programs designed especially for the medically underserved
- Providing care on a sliding fee schedule based on ability to pay
- Having more multi-lingual providers and staff to better communicate with patients and families
Developing a financially-stable model to care for the most vulnerable populations long into the future
To qualify for the program and meet federal government requirements, the staff will remain Geisinger employees but will be leased to CommunityCare. Our uniforms and signs may change, but our commitment to providing you with compassionate, high-quality care will always remain our top priority.
Why is this change happening?
It is important to stay ahead of the changes in today’s rapidly changing health care environment. We are passionate about our patients and realize that there are differences in the various communities we serve. We want to embrace those differences and make sure we are providing the right care in the right place. FQHCs allow patients to receive comprehensive, high quality care in the same environment with lower out of pocket costs.
Patients will continue to see their same providers, the hours of operation will remain the same, and the same insurances will be accepted as before.
In this new care model, we will be able to provide these services as part of the FQHC focus on comprehensive health management. We will, for example, place an emphasis on having bilingual providers and others on staff so we can better communicate with Spanish-speaking patients. The Centers will also focus on specific programs to help patients with opioid dependency and HIV, as well as disease management.
To qualify for the program and to meet federal government requirements, though, the staff will remain Geisinger employees but will be leased to the FQHC. The new entity will have a board of directors and leadership that will work in conjunction with HRSA and Geisinger to best provide services to our patients.
We believe this new structure will best enable us to care for patients and serve the unique needs of our communities.
Learn more online at PaCommunityCare.org.