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Community Health Center of Mason City pushes Congress for new funding plan as deadline approaches

In just a few months, health center sees the need for mental healthcare in Mason City.

Posted: Apr 24, 2019 8:22 PM
Updated: Apr 25, 2019 8:44 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa- When the Community Health Center of Mason City opened its doors last October they knew dental care was going to be in high demand but they had no idea how severe the need for mental healthcare was going to be.

“I hired staff and didn’t know if they were going to be seeing patients right away but we’re actually looking to hire another psychiatric nurse by June or August,” said Chief Executive Officer Ranae Kruckenberg.

Kruckenberg heads up the clinic. She said they’ve already helped more than 2,000 patients in over 5,000 visits. Continuing that level of care might become difficult as they approach the end of their two-year federal funding in October.

“When that money runs out we will be paid month to month until that money runs out,” she said. "We have to plan everything for only one month and hope the next month they pass something.”

The feds fund 70% of community healthcare budgets. Now the Mason City clinic is asking Congress to move to a 5-year plan. US Congressman Steve King said that’s a reasonable idea but will still likely face turmoil.

“There is too much polarization going on in Congress right now,” Congressman King stated, “Our funding is just herky-jerky with continuing resolutions and not the level of predictability that they need.”

The new budget doesn’t have to be decided until October of this year. Kruckenberg and her crew will continue to help those in the North Iowa area as they hold out hope for more stable funding.

“You’re not able to provide 2500 visits on just 30% of your budget,” she said.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 137536

Reported Deaths: 2421
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hennepin34657994
Ramsey14342362
Dakota10027138
Anoka9039151
Washington608972
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Scott349634
Olmsted331430
St. Louis307970
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Blue Earth20667
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Chisago10832
Crow Wing106222
Lyon9966
Benton9769
Waseca9379
Beltrami9147
Otter Tail9017
Todd8656
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Morrison77610
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Marshall1311
Lake1260
Norman1210
Mahnomen1172
Clearwater1140
Grant994
Red Lake812
Traverse580
Kittson490
Lake of the Woods441
Cook170

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 117876

Reported Deaths: 1666
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Polk19173289
Woodbury728597
Johnson590630
Black Hawk5727101
Linn5692132
Dubuque529558
Scott466241
Story403918
Dallas348544
Pottawattamie326744
Sioux247017
Buena Vista226812
Marshall204436
Webster189115
Plymouth167831
Wapello154162
Clinton150227
Muscatine148758
Des Moines140910
Cerro Gordo140227
Crawford136314
Warren12737
Carroll116813
Jasper112334
Henry10745
Marion103211
Lee95910
Tama95837
Delaware80213
Dickinson7529
Wright7341
Boone7269
Mahaska70924
Bremer6879
Harrison67315
Washington66711
Jackson6463
Benton5982
Lyon5568
Clay5414
Louisa52515
Winnebago50219
Hardin4837
Winneshiek4839
Hamilton4784
Cedar4777
Kossuth4770
Buchanan4625
Poweshiek46211
Jones4544
Clayton4503
Floyd44011
Emmet43520
Iowa4189
Page4130
Guthrie40715
Cherokee4062
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Cass4023
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Shelby3812
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Clarke3573
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Unassigned150
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