County seeks federal health clinic for needy

Callaway County needs a federally subsidized community health center in the Fulton area to serve low income families, Presiding Commissioner Gary Jungermann said Thursday.

Jungermann said county commissioners toured a federally qualified health center for low income residents Wednesday in Jefferson City.

“The Jefferson City facility is a clinic for low income individuals that provides dental and medical services. We believe there is a need for such a facility in Callaway County in the Fulton area,” Jungermann said.

The presiding commissioner said in order to establish a federally qualified health center sooner in Callaway County it would make sense to start as a satellite of the center in Jefferson City.

Jungermann said it may be possible to start a Fulton area dental clinic as a satellite of the Jefferson City center within a year.

“I am not sure about the timeline because we are dealing with the federal government. Money also is getting tighter with the federal government now,” Jungermann said.

But Jungermann said it is his hope that the Fulton area clinic could start as a dental clinic and then expand to other medical services in order to meet the underserved medical needs of the community.

“Cole County provides medical, dental and mental health services as well as pain therapy at the center. It’s a wonderful facility because there are a lot of dentists and doctors who don’t take low income Medicaid patients. It is a service that we are working hard on to start in Callaway County,” Jungermann said.

Jungermann said the Jefferson City office already has satellite dental clinics in Linn in Osage County and at California in Moniteau County.

“There’s a lot of work that needs to be completed in order to accomplish this. We are thinking a satellite dental clinic in the Fulton area probably would be a good start. Once the federal government gets started in this, we feel they will discover a real need in Callaway County,” Jungermann said.

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