Institute for Family Health Will Open Practice in Site of Former Soundview Health Center

Bronx, NY – July 2, 2012 – The Institute for Family Health announced today it will open a Family Health Center in the building previously occupied by the Soundview Health Center at 731 White Plains Road in the Bronx. The Institute is actively seeking New York State Department of Health approval to operate the new Stevenson Family Health Center as a licensed primary care center at the site, as well as approval from the federal Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to designate it as a federally qualified health center. The newest addition to the Institute’s primary care network will be named for Stevenson Commons, the housing complex where the site is located. With the renewed emphasis on national health reform and resulting need to rapidly expand primary care throughout the country, the Institute’s efforts to preserve services in the Soundview community are timely.

The Institute, a network of 17 full-time and nine part-time community health centers, signed a lease last week for the building that housed the Soundview center, and will immediately begin the process of updating the facility, which closed recently. When it opens, the center will offer primary care to patients of all ages, adding dental and mental health care services later in the year. When fully operational, the practice will be open daytimes and evenings, Monday through Friday, and all day Saturday and Sunday.

Neil Calman, MD, the Institute’s president and CEO, said, “The Institute is a family practice organization that has been caring for Bronx residents for nearly 30 years. We specialize in providing superior quality primary care services in neighborhoods which have the highest medical need. We also provide dental care, social work services and mental health care. I am thrilled to be coming back to Soundview, where 30 years ago as a young physician, I learned to practice community medicine, as well as learning about managing a medical center.” Calman has a personal relationship with the Soundview community; he was the founding medical director when the Soundview Health Center opened in 1981, but left in 1984 to found the Institute for Family Health and develop the first of the Institute’s family medicine residency training programs.

“The Stevenson Family Health Center will provide comprehensive patient-centered care, with a focus on preventive care,” added Eric Gayle, MD, the Institute’s Bronx regional medical director. “We will also employ our state-of-the-art health information technology, complete with a bilingual patient portal that permits patients to view their health records on their home computer or cell phone, make appointments on line, or contact their physician on-line with a question.” Dr. Gayle noted that since the closure of Soundview, a large number of new patients have visited another of the Institute’s practices in Parkchester. In fact, the Parkchester center will relocate to the new Stevenson center this Fall as the result of a real estate development deal for the area. “The Stevenson Family Health Center will become a home for the Parkchester patients as well as many former Soundview patients.”

The Institute for Family Health is dedicated to providing patients with the best healthcare available anywhere, regardless of their ability to pay. Over the years, the Institute has developed a successful process for revitalizing failing health facilities that were facing financial or organizational difficulties. It opened a Family Health Center in Harlem in July 2010 when North General Hospital closed, now a busy practice that will move to a newly renovated facility in December 2012. The Institute is also expanding its Walton Family Health Center on 177th Street and Walton Avenue in the Bronx, built in 1996. This year, Mount Sinai School of Medicine opened a new Department of Family Medicine in collaboration with the Institute, chaired by Dr. Calman.

The Institute has become a major force for primary care access and health professions training programs in New York State, while cultivating a reputation for exceptional service quality. Beginning in 2009, Institute health centers received the highest recognition from the National Committee for Quality Assurance as Level 3 Patient Centered Medical Homes. The Institute also operates three residency training programs in family medicine, and several community health promotion programs, including programs designed to improve the self-management of diabetes and eliminate racial disparities in health.

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The Institute for Family Health is a federally qualified community health center network dedicated to improving access to high quality, patient-centered primary health care targeted to the needs of medically underserved communities. For more information, visit www.institute2000.org.