February 2024  |  Issue No. 22

The Access to Care Act's Direct Impact Will Be Limited. We Support It Anyway. 

By Leslie Graham, President and CEO of the Primary Care Coalition 

On February 20th, PCC submitted written testimony to the State legislature in support of SB705, the Access to Care Act, with amendments. Senate Bill SB705 (and its companion House Bill HB728) remove requirements for those using the Maryland Health Benefits Exchange for the purchase of qualified health insurance plans to provide proof of their legal residency status. Conceptually, this opens the purchase of health insurance on the Benefits Exchange to some of our most vulnerable families and neighbors, our undocumented residents.  

Meet Tom Lewis

Few people know the history and stories of the Primary Care Coalition better than Tom Lewis, Chief Information Officer (CIO) for IT infrastructure. His involvement with the organization spans nearly three decades, and his passion for the work is evident. He’s made a difference in how PCC strategizes, organizes, and implements programs throughout the community. And because he contributed vital information technology and networking expertise at critical points in the organization’s history, PCC currently has robust data management capabilities that strengthen programs and services to serve the community’s needs better.

“The collaboration at PCC is just wonderful, and the enthusiasm and energy make it a fun place to work and intellectually stimulating,” said Lewis. “There is also a sense of really helping others.”

PCC Workforce Initiative Heats Up!

The Primary Care Coalition (PCC) is collaborating with Montgomery College, Montgomery County hospitals, and several community-based organizations to train and place 200 entry-level healthcare workers during 2024 and early 2025. The Nexus Montgomery Workforce Capacity project will provide scholarships and support services to help participants start successful career paths in healthcare. Since December, PCC has fielded over 450 inquiries from community members, oriented over 150 people to the program benefits and requirements, and enrolled 40 people into certification programs at Montgomery College.  

This $1.3 million program to help culturally and linguistically diverse members of the Montgomery County community gain certification at Montgomery College and find employment in entry-level, career-path jobs is funded entirely by the federal Department of Labor. WorkSource Montgomery and Maryland Physicians Care have supported additional workforce  capacity programming for student financial and wraparound support. PCC is working closely with Montgomery County hospitals to prepare candidates for hospital careers and connect them with employment, a strategy to alleviate hospital staffing shortages.  PCC is partnering with the Ethiopian Community Center of Maryland, American Muslim Senior Services, Classroom 2 Community, and Muslim Community Center for outreach and student support services and intends to bring on other outreach partners. 

For more information, visit https://www.nexusmontgomery.org/workforce.html or contact Liza Greenberg, Director, Workforce Capacity,  Liza_Greenberg@primarycarecoalition.org.

County Releases 2023 Health Needs Assessment

A 2023 assessment of community health needs, barriers, and issues, as shared through the perspectives of more than 2,500 Montgomery County residents and stakeholders, was recently released by the Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). The Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) report identified mental health as the most important issue overall. Diabetes, arthritis, obesity, and heart disease were among the most common health issues reported by residents.

The CHNA report identified various other needs, barriers, and issues. They include more bilingual and culturally competent mental health providers, affordable medical and dental care, better access to healthy foods, and barriers and challenges in specific zip code areas. The County will use the information to develop a Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP). The full CHNA report can be found on the Healthy Montgomery website.

February 28, 3:30-5:30 p.m., Rachel Carson Conservation Park. Take a moderate hike with an experienced naturalist and explore one of the County’s premier conservation areas. Meet at the parking area at 22201 Zion Rd, Brookeville, MD. The fee is $2. Register here.

February 29, 1:15-2:15 p.m., Maple Sugar Walk, for ages 6 and up. Visit the Maple Grove at the Brookside Nature Center and learn how to make maple syrup, 1400 Glenallan Ave., Wheaton. The fee is $7 per person. Register here.

March 4, 5:30-6:30 p.m., Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness via Zoom, hosted by Independence Now for individuals with disabilities. Falls can cause traumatic brain injuries, and the class will address fall risks at home. Register here.


Job Opportunities

Bilingual Behavioral Health Care Manager (Part-Time 24 hours a Week)

Bilingual Community Health Nurse (Full-Time)

Bilingual Pharmacy Coordinator (Full-Time)

Director of Specialty Care and Medicine Access (Full-Time)

Workforce Navigator Manager (Full-Time)


Meet Lily! 

Meet February’s Pet of PCC, Lily. She is the beloved companion of Hillery Tsumba, PCCs Chief Operating Officer. Lily is affectionately known as Lively Lily for her boundless energy. She delights in chasing frisbees, balls, people she loves, and squirrels. She is known to be a great timekeeper and an excellent alarm clock at home.   As she celebrates her 2nd birthday on February 28th, let's extend our warmest wishes of a joyous day to this precious pup! Dad Joke via Tiny Beans in honor of Lilys birthday!


Primary Care Coalition
8757 Georgia Ave 10th Floor | Silver Spring, Maryland 20910
301-628-3405 | info@primarycarecoalition.org

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