The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) has elected Jim Luisi, CEO of North End Waterfront Health (NEW Health), as its next Chairman. Luisi will serve as the organization’s top elected official starting in 2017, while continuing to lead NEW Health.
“It’s an honor to be elected as the next NACHC Chair and I’m thrilled to advocate for community health centers on a national level,” Luisi says. “Federally funded health centers are the cornerstone of the U.S. healthcare system because they provide high-quality care to underserved areas and populations, regardless of patients’ ability to pay. As Chair, I will ensure that NEW Health and other health centers throughout the country are able to continue the impressive work they’ve been doing for more than half a century.”
NACHC, which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year, is a non-profit organization whose mission is to expand access to quality and affordable primary and preventive healthcare services to almost 25 million uninsured and medically underserved people nationwide. NACHC is the largest network of primary care physicians in the country. Luisi has long been active within the organization, and served as Vice Speaker for two years and Speaker of the House for six years.
“As Chair, my priorities will be developing a permanent fix to healthcare funding, improving quality of care through the Patient Centered Medical Home model, and enhancing data collection and dissemination,” Luisi says. “There have been many changes in healthcare in recent years, but I believe community health centers will continue to thrive.”
Luisi celebrated his win during a reception at the NACHC conference in Orlando, Florida, on August 22. Mike’s Pastry generously donated and shipped Italian cookies to the event, which was attended by several former NACHC Chairs.
While advocating for NACHC, Luisi will maintain his role as CEO of NEW Health. Under his guidance, the health center has expanded its healthcare services to Charlestown High School and dental services to MGH Chelsea.
Earlier this month, NEW Health was awarded $650,000/year to operate a health center on Tufts Street in Charlestown. NEW Health Charlestown, which is slated to open in the fall, will offer primary care, pediatrics, dental, vision, and behavioral health care to local residents.
“It’s certainly an exciting time,” Luisi says. “I’m looking forward to improving the health of communities both locally and nationally.”