The number of agriculture workers served by Health Centers in the U.S. is on the decline at an estimated 18%. During the 2015 National Farmworker Health Conference, a Call to Action was deemed necessary by Health Center executives, consumer board members, clinical leaders, and farmworker advocates to improve this number.
In an announcement made on May 22, 2015, every Migrant Health Center grantee will be challenged to increase the number of agricultural workers they serve by 15% each year for the next five years. Even Health Centers who do not receive 330G funding are asked to report their numbers for patients who meet the definition of “migrant” or “seasonal” agricultural worker per UDS criteria and definitions. The overall goal is to work collectively to increase Health Centers’ reach within this special population.
According to the 2014 Migrant Health Program Directory published by the National Center for Farmworker Health, five Migrant Health Center funded organizations in Michigan served 13,394* patients who were agricultural workers.
The National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) and the National Center for Farmworker Health will serve as the lead agencies for the Ag Worker Access 2020 campaign and a task force will be appointed soon. Additional information will follow. In the meantime, comments and suggestions should be directed to Joe Gallegos at NACHC.
* Data from 2013.