St. Lawrence Health System, partner organizations awarded more than $250,000
St. Lawrence Health System and partner organizations have received Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) Program innovation funding from the AHI Performing Provider System in support of a diabetic retinopathy screening program. Awardees pictured are, from left, St. Lawrence Health System Chief Operating Officer Eric Burch, Community Health Center of the North Country Executive Director Anne Richey, United Helpers Chief Executive Officer Stephen Knight, and St. Lawrence Health System Chief Executive Officer David Acker. Photo submitted by AHI.POTSDAM -- More than $250,000 has been awarded by the Adirondack Health Institute Performing Provider System (AHI PPS) to St. Lawrence Health System (SLHS) and 11 partner organizations to undertake innovative health care projects.
St. Lawrence Health System (SLHS) will use funding to offset the cost of equipment to offer diabetic retinopathy screening at 13 regional facilities, including each of the nine SLHS Patient-Centered Medical Homes, Northern Lights Home Health Care, United Helpers’ Maplewood and RiverLedge campuses, and the Community Health Center of the North Country Malone Clinic.
“Due to transportation, economic, and awareness challenges, nearly 72 percent of SLHS patients with diabetes have not had appropriate retinal screening and are at risk for developing blindness,” explained St. Lawrence Health System Chief Operating Officer Eric Burch. “Funding will help us to provide retinal exams at the same time a patient visits his or her primary care provider. By offering this exam, we significantly increase the odds of protecting a patient’s eyesight.”
SLHS and several partners also received funding to create an authorized transportation service program to help Medicaid beneficiaries travel to service destinations not eligible for funded transportation. “Many St. Lawrence County Medicaid recipients and households do not own a dependable vehicle, or lack access to dependable transportation,” said Burch. “While the state provides non-emergency medical transportation to this population, the service is limited to medical appointments. Funding will help alleviate challenges associated with managing a healthy lifestyle, such as picking up prescriptions, enrolling in essential support services, accessing food, acquiring housing assistance, and obtaining urgent medical services.”
Innovation funding, part of the state’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment (DSRIP) Program’s efforts to fundamentally restructure the Medicaid system, will support the implementation of these projects in the St. Lawrence County region.