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June 23, 2006



(Biloxi, Mississippi) - Governor Haley Barbour announced today the Coastal Family Health Center, headquartered in Biloxi, will receive a $6.1 million grant to help restore primary health care services to people in Harrison, Jackson and Hancock counties.


"I am pleased to announce this grant because it goes to the heart of how we can best recover from the terrible impact of Hurricane Katrina on local health care services - by restoring critical services as quickly as possible," Governor Barbour said at a morning session with Mississippi journalists assembled for the annual Mississippi Press Association convention.


CFHC has provided comprehensive medical, dental, behavioral health/substance abuse, optometry, and pharmacy services for residents of Hancock, Harrison and Jackson counties for the last 27 years. Pre-Katrina, CFHC had 5 free-standing clinics in the three counties, two school-based clinics, and two mobile medical units with a service area population of 370,000 people.


Katrina completely destroyed the clinic and administrative sites in Biloxi and the clinic in Bay St. Louis. The Gulfport clinic sustained major roof damage which resulted in water damage in the building. The clinics at Saucier and Vancleave also suffered roof damage, and the school clinics at Moss Point were water damaged. The two mobile medical units and their pharmacy were destroyed. All personnel and patient records were lost, but historical records remain due to federal and state reporting requirements.


In 2004, CFHC provided health care to 30,454 people, including 1,744 homeless individuals, through 96,082 billable medical, dental, mental health/substance abuse, and optometry encounters. There were a total of 116,509 patient contacts. Nearly 67% of these individuals reported incomes below 100% of poverty, and another 16% had incomes between 100% and 200% of poverty.


The grant will assist the facility in restoring the supply and availability of comprehensive primary care services; reducing health disparities related to mental health, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and pre-natal care; and providing culturally and linguistically appropriate care to African-American, Latino, Vietnamese populations and other groups, such as the homeless.