SMCS PLANS REGIONAL DENTAL CENTER EXPANSION IN CHESTER, VT

SPRINGFIELD, VT  –  Springfield Medical Care Systems, Inc. (SMCS) is moving forward with plans to expand dental services at Chester Health Center located on Route 11 in Chester, VT.

The SMCS Community Health Needs Assessment revealed strong demand for increased dental services, particularly for prevention and care for the underserved, since many lower income residents have limited access to needed dental care.

In response to this need, plans include expanding dental services in Chester with the addition of another dentist and two dental hygienists. To accomplish this, Robert Schwartz, MD, will continue his practice at Rockingham Health Center as of June 1st, improving access for his patients to expanded services including walk-in care 7 days a week, and on-site x-ray and lab services.  Gerald Drabyn, MD, moved his practice to Springfield Health Center effective April 2nd.  Jean White, LICSW, will move to Rockingham, and Heidi Lowe, LICSW, will offer appointments at Ludlow Health Center, Springfield Health Center and Mountain Valley Health Center in Londonderry, after June 1st. All Chester Health Center staff will be employed at other SMCS clinic locations after June 1st.

An analysis of patient utilization revealed Chester residents prefer to receive their primary care at other SMCS locations. Convenience is an important consideration in healthcare choice, and currently less than 20% of Chester residents are choosing to receive care in Chester. These transition plans respond to patient choice — and allocate resources where they are needed to meet patient demand. All SMCS clinic locations are welcoming new patients and health records will be available at other clinic locations as requested.

“It is our honor to serve the healthcare needs of Chester area residents,” comments Tim Ford, Chief Executive Officer of SMCS. He continues, “Dental care plays an important role in overall health, and we look forward to continuing our relationship with our patients and with the Town of Chester as we expand services and develop a greatly-needed regional center for dental care.”

About Springfield Medical Care Systems, Inc.

Springfield Medical Care Systems (SMCS) is a not-for-profit, community-based health care system that includes nine community health center locations.  As an integrated health system, SMCS offers patient-centered care and emphasizes quality, access, and affordability for all, with financial assistance available based on a sliding fee  scale. Services include primary and preventative health care for people of all ages, pediatrics, health screenings, nutrition counseling, behavioral health counseling, dental care, vision care, and access to discounted pharmaceuticals. Springfield Hospital offers a broad array of acute hospital services including diagnostic lab and radiology services, Springfield Area Adult Day Service, Orthopaedics, Women’s Health, General Surgery, ENT, Urology, Cardiology and Oncology. The Windham Center for Psychiatric Care, located in Bellows Falls, VT, offers inpatient psychiatric care. For more information about SMCS and its services, please visit www.springfieldmed.org.