By Paula Katinas
Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Larry McReynolds, president of Lutheran Family Health Centers, has been elected to serve as chairman of the Board of Directors for the Community Health Care Association of New York State (CHCANYS), a not-for-profit association representing community health and migrant centers across the state.
"I'm honored to have been selected to lead the CHCANYS board and to help ensure that everyone in New York has access to high quality community-based health care services," McReynolds stated after the vote took place. "It's vitally important that we continue to advocate on behalf of our community health centers. Whether it's in urban, suburban or rural locations, they are successfully breaking down barriers to care, leading to better outcomes for patients and improving population health throughout the state."
Elizabeth Swain, president and CEO of CHCANYS, called McReynolds “a well-respected advocate for community health centers," and predicted that he will be an asset to the organization in his new role as chairman. "His high level of insight and business acumen for patient-centered care will enable us to champion essential needs on behalf of New York's federally qualified health centers," Swain said.
The CHCANYS was founded in 1971 to ensure that all New Yorkers, including those who are medically underserved, have continuous access to high quality community-based health care services, according the mission statement on the organization’s website. CHCANYS also serves as the voice of community health centers as leading providers of primary health care in New York State, according to the group’s mission statement.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the CHCANYS worked in partnership with the New York State Department of Health and the mayor’s office to dispatch a dozen mobile medical and outreach vans to provide health care to communities in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island devastated by the storm. Medical personnel in the vans provided free health care to anyone who needed it.
McReynolds has guided the Lutheran Family Health Centers since 2005. Based in Sunset Park, the network of health centers is one of the largest in the county, serving as the primary care provider for more than 100,000 people, according to officials at Lutheran HealthCare, the organization which operates the network of centers as well as Lutheran Medical Center, the hospital.
Under McReynolds’s leadership, Lutheran Family Health Centers has grown significantly, officials said.
In 2008, the network received the Distinguished Heath Care Service Award from the Health Resources and Services Administration.