Northern Oswego County Health Services, Inc. (NOCHSI) celebrated National Health Center Week with dedication and ribbon cutting events on Aug. 8 at its Pulaski Health Center. National Health Center Week is an annual recognition of the more than 1,200 federally qualified health centers like NOCHSI that serve nearly 20 million patients throughout the United States.
Federally qualified health centers are generally located in rural and urban areas where many uninsured and underinsured patients reside. The health centers enhance access to primary and preventive health care services, helping to reduce the number of emergency department visits and hospital stays. NOCHSI provides medical, dental and school-based services to over 12,000 patients each year encompassing nearly 70,000 annual patient visits.
At its celebration, NOCHSI conducted a ceremony dedicating the two Pulaski Health Center waiting areas to its two pioneering physicians, the late Dr. Hugh McChesney and the recently retired Dr. Charles Kim.
Dr. McChesney was NOCHSI’s first physician, starting the practice by conducting home visits and seeing patients in his home. Dr. McChesney was later joined by Dr. Kim. The dedication ceremony culminated in the unveiling of portraits and plaques for both physicians. Dr. McChesney’s portrait was unveiled by his wife, Nancy and son Thomas. Prior to the unveiling a touching letter was read that was composed by Dr. McChesney’s daughter, Nancy who was unable to attend from out of town. Likewise, a letter of gratitude from the traveling Dr. Kim was read. His portrait was unveiled by current NOCHSI Doctors Jay and Pat Chapman who had the honor of working with Dr. Kim for 27 years.
The celebration also included a ribbon-cutting for the completion of a clinical expansion at the Pulaski Health Center. Under the initial efforts of current Army secretary and former Congressman John McHugh, and with the follow-up efforts from Congressman Bill Owens NOCHSI was awarded funding from the Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration. The funding allowed the Pulaski Health Center to convert unoccupied space to six new exam rooms and two provider offices, to add a third nursing station, and to expand the reception, referral and triage areas. The ribbon cutting was performed by State Senator Patty Ritchie, Jennifer Cook on behalf of Assemblyman Will Barclay, NOCHSI’s President Tim McClusky and CEO Dan Dey.
Dey noted that “the expansion funding arrived at a critical time for NOCHSI as its volume has increased 45 percent in the past four years.”
NOCHSI operates the Pulaski Health Center at 61 Delano St. in Pulaski, and four school-based health centers located in the APW, Pulaski and Sandy Creek Central School Districts. The Pulaski Health Center is a family-oriented health care practice that provides Northern Oswego and Southern Jefferson County residents with a variety of comprehensive health care and related services. The center is accredited through The Joint Commission (formerly the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations).
All major insurances are accepted, and a sliding fee scale discount program is available for eligible patients.
For additional information on the services provided through Pulaski Health Center contact 298-6564 or visit www.pulaskihealthcenter.org.
Photo Caption: The ribbon cutting was performed by State Senator Patty Ritchie, Jennifer Cook on behalf of Assemblyman
Will Barclay, NOCHSI's President Tim McClusky and CEO Dan Day.