PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
August 11, 2014

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

Christie Administration Celebrates National Health Center Week

Commissioner O'Dowd to Visit Trenton Community Health Center

As part of National Health Center Week, August 10-16, New Jersey Health Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd will visit Henry J. Austin Health Center in Trenton to highlight the comprehensive and patient-centered care provided by New Jersey's 20 community health centers and their 108 licensed satellite facilities.

"New Jersey community health centers are an essential part of our health care safety net," said O'Dowd. "Community health centers provide a comprehensive medical home where our state's residents can receive critical preventive and primary care."

There are more than 80 National Health Center Week events taking place around the state this week including free health screenings, HIV testing, nutrition education, picnics and health fairs.

The theme for National Health Center Week 2014 is "America's Health Centers - Local Engines for Healthier Communities"-highlighting their efforts to deliver high-quality, cost-effective, accessible care while serving as major employers and economic engines in their local economies.

Health Commissioner O'Dowd will visit a health fair at Henry J. Austin Health Center in Trenton at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, August 12.

On Wednesday, August 13, at 10 a.m., Carla Carter, Department Program Health Specialist, will attend a groundbreaking ceremony of South Jersey Family Medical Center's Burlington City location.

The Department's Assistant Commissioner of Family Health Services, Gloria Rodriguez, will participate in Newark Community Health Center's ribbon-cutting event at their Broadway site on Thursday, August 14 at 11 a.m.

In fiscal year 2014, these centers provided care to more than 480,000 patients during 1.5 million visits.

In rural areas as well as urban areas, community health centers provide prenatal and well baby care and immunizations to prevent childhood diseases like whooping cough and measles. They provide screenings for blood pressure, cancer, cholesterol and HIV. Many community health centers provide dental care and mental health care and bring mobile vans to underserved populations. They serve all individuals including the homeless and the mentally ill. Most have extended evening and weekend hours and some have pharmacies on-site.

Visit the Department's website to find a community health center location and services.

For additional information on health center week celebrations, please visit: http://healthcenterweek.org/events.cfm