JACKSONVILLE CITY COUNCIL
†PUBLIC HEALTH & SAFETY SPECIAL COMMITTEE MINUTES
March 7, 2017
City Council Chamber
Ground Floor, City Hall
117 W. Duval Street
Immediately following the PHS Committee Meeting
Attendance:†† Council Members: Sam Newby (Chair), Bill Gulliford (Vice Chair), Aaron Bowman, Anna Lopez Brosche, Tommy Hazouri, Katrina Brown, Joyce Morgan; Assistant General Counsel Paige Johnston; Assistant Council Auditor Kyle Billy; Jordan Elsbury, Administration; John J. Jackson, Colleen Hampsey, Council Research Division; Legislative Assistant Philip Zamarron.
The Chair called the Special Meeting to order at 9:33 A.M. and announced that the topic for the Special Meeting was Citizens Uninsured for Health Care.
Allison Hewitt, State of Florida/Duval Health Department, provided the Committee with an update on the Zika virus.
Mia Jones, CEO, AGAPE Community Health Care, Inc., made a presentation on how AGAPE provides health care services for the uninsured in the community.† She indicated that there was a great need to serve the uninsured in Jacksonville.† Organized in 2004, AGAPE Community Health Center, Inc. is a federal qualified health center that provides comprehensive medical, dental and behavioral services for the uninsured, underinsured and medically underserved throughout the City.
AGAPE has five clinics: King Street (West Jacksonville), Timuquana Road (Wesconnett), Edgewood Avenue, (Northwest Jacksonville), Kennerly Road (Southside), and North Pearl Street (Magnolia Oasis). †The health centers provide primary care for children and adults.† No one who comes to the health centers is turned away.† AGAPE has to aid clients that show up at the clinics whether they can pay for the services rendered or not.
AGAPE is no longer linked with the State of† Florida-Duval Health Department. The health centers do, however, partner with several nonprofit organizations to reduce health disparities in our local area.††
AGAPE receives federal grants and private funding.
Penny Thompson, Vice President for †Government Affairs, UF Health, gave a presentation on the uninsured and underinsured that UF Health sees and treats.† In addition, she explained the many challenges that UF Health faces with diminishing funding sources.
One of the challenges that UF Health has is Orange Park Medical Center and Memorial Hospital having recently acquired the status of trauma centers.† Ms. Thompson suggested that people involved in motor vehicle accidents on the highway are likely to opt for the †emergency rooms of Memorial or Orange Park rather than UF Health.
UF Healthís emergency room is a medical school training facility.† UF Health faces the challenge of losing promising surgeons if there is not enough funding to attract and keep future surgeons.† Federal law requires the emergency room to triage or stabilize anyone who shows up needing immediate medical care regardless of the patientsí ability to pay.
The City provides UF Health $26 million; these funds are from the General Fund. $9 million of that allocation is for the hospitalís care for jail inmates.
Ms. Thompson explained that safety net care is underfunded.† She noted that other counties in Florida pay far more for safety net care than Duval County.†
UF Health is launching a new initiative for indigent care.† The Total Care Center will fund medical care that includes family care, pharmaceutical, psychiatrists and other specialists for City contract clients.
Ms. Thompson fielded numerous questions, particularly on the impact of changes in the Affordable Care Act that impact Medicaid.
There being no further business, the Special Meeting was adjourned at 10:28 A.M.
John J. Jackson, Council Research Division (904) 630-1729
Posted: 3:00 P.M.