We’re getting ready for the NACHC Community Health Institute (CHI) and EXPO which kicks off in Chicago from August 28th to the 30th. The conference draws thousands of health center clinicians, board members, executives from across the country to gather under one roof [read media advisory]. Speakers from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are scheduled to speak. There are nearly 140 exhibiters at the EXPO exhibition, not to mention the NACHC games in the exhibit hall. But the real meat and potatoes of the conference will be addressing the issues that health centers are confronting in their daily work. As a recent article about the CHI in Modern Healthcare Magazine noted, attracting and utilizing the primary care workforce will be a central theme. Speakers such as Dr. Karen DeSalvo, the Acting Assistant Secretary of Health for the Department of Health and Human Services will discuss how innovative care models such as patient-centered medical homes will drive which types of healthcare professionals are most needed to serve the clinics’ low-income patients.
In addition to exciting speakers during the CHI, there will also be a host of education sessions, including ones that focus on emerging public health issues that have made headlines, such as the Zika virus and the nationwide epidemic on opioid addiction. Health centers are among the responders to these crises, which makes these cutting edge sessions all the more vital. The recent work health centers are doing in addressing addiction is an issue NACHC President and CEO Tom Van Coverden wrote about in this op-ed, also published in Modern Healthcare. There is also a session focused on the prevention, screening, care and prevention of the Zika virus. We will be live streaming that session on Facebook starting at 8:30 am on Tuesday, August 20th.
Stay tuned to this blog for more developments and features as we report from the NACHC CHI. Follow @NACHC and #2016CHI.