Brockton Neighborhood Health Center
Community Health Centers are the lifeblood of every community that has one and the Brockton Neighborhood Health Center is no exception. The center offers a range of services -- from primary care to dental services to social services -- and has become a vibrant health care attraction in its recently built building in the heart of downtown Brockton.

Recovery Act Impact: Brockton Health Center

  • $1.13 million

  • Built a 6,100-SF Urgent Care Center

  • Credited with 60 new jobs

In fact, the center is so vibrant that when Sue Joss, its chief executive officer said, "We're growing like crazy," it is no exaggeration.

In 2007, the center had 65,000 patient visits. Just three years later, the center had 109,000 for the year. That number is expected to reach 130,000 at the end of this year. "We saw staggering growth even with health care reform," said Joss. "Our only limiting factor is space."

For the center - which was founded 17 years ago in the basement of a church -- the stimulus program could not have happened at a better time. Its' phenomenal growth could not be accommodated unless they

Brockton Neighborhood Health Center staff
could expand and the stimulus awards - of $304K for an increased demand in services and $828K for capital improvements - enabled it to do just that.

Jeffrey Simon, director of the Massachusetts Recovery & Reinvestment office, visited the center at the behest of Governor Deval Patrick to see firsthand the impact of its stimulus awards.

"Stimulus was a lifesaver. It re-stabilized us enough to jump start our growth," said Joss.

The center's stimulus funds were used to help fund a new 6100 square foot urgent care center which had previously been housed within the adult medicine department.

Brockton Neighborhood Health Center staff
The expansion meant the urgent care was able to increase from six rooms to 15 and add six providers and the adult medicine department was able to expand by six rooms. The center added 22 people under the Recovery Act but Joss credits the stimulus with the full 60 positions the center recently added.

"We used the stimulus money to hire new physicians which generates revenue which allows us to hire more staff," she noted.

The health center, which at 250 employees is the largest employer in downtown Brockton, also prevents unnecessary trips to the area emergency rooms, visits that cost up to three times as much as a visit to the center.

"We're busy and growing," said Joss. "We can sustain the revenue. We just needed the boost. Out providers reach a full template within a

Jeffrey Simon at Brockton Neighborhood Health Center
year."

Joss pointed out that the center's bank didn't think they could handle an expansion to 40,000 square feet. The center is now at 65,000 square feet and nearing capacity - again.

"For health centers, the stimulus stimulated," said Joss. "