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South End celebrates opening of new community health center

Posted by Patrick Rosso  April 30, 2012 04:37 PM

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South End residents, doctors, and politicians excitedly welcomed the South End Community Health Center’s new satellite health center to the neighborhood Saturday.

The new center, at 400 Shawmut Ave., will work closely with residents and students from the Blackstone Elementary School to provide them with the tools and services to lead healthy and productive lives.

“We are excited about our new satellite health center and the opportunity to expand services to the children at the school through our school based health program,” said Robert Johnson, president and CEO of the center.

The new center, dedicated to Dr. Gerald Hass, a champion of community health care for residents from all over Boston, will provide primary care, behavioral health, and dental services to more than 580 students at the Blackstone.

“I am humbled by this honor and it has been a tremendous pleasure to take care of thousands of children at the health center over four-decades with wonderful support from my colleagues and staff,” Hass, cofounder and physician-in-chief of the center, said in a statement. “The school-based health program will be a valuable resource for the children.”

With a direct connection to the school the new center, which has two exam rooms, two dental offices, and three mental health offices, aims to make services and resources more accessible for students and their families.

“We are just elated to have the center back on school grounds providing services to the students and the community,” said Cynthia Paris-Jeffries, the Blackstone principal.

Former patients also spoke at the dedication about Hass and how he has helped them throughout their lives.

“Dr. Hass cared about what I had to say,” said Paula Johnson, a former patient of Hass. “He made the time for me; he taught me how to follow my heart and my mind”

For more information about the center and its partnership with the Blackstone Elementary School, click here.

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Email Patrick D. Rosso, patrick.d.rosso@gmail.com. Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.

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