Editor:

Health care is a top issue on voter’s minds – and with good reason. Everyone seems to have a story about how difficult it is to see a doctor, fill a prescription, or get affordable care. Due to the closure of local hospitals it is increasingly difficult for area residents to access affordable healthcare.

Congress is debating a lot of fixes, but one solution they should focus on has already been around for more than 50 years: Community Health Centers. Health centers care for 1 in 12 Americans, approximately 29 million people. They save the health care system $24 billion a year by eliminating waste and generate $54.6 billion in economic activity. They keep people healthy and save lives. I know because I work at Ohio Hills Health Services.

Health centers like mine, are already addressing public health challenges – the opioid epidemic, caring for veterans, offering Behavioral Health Services and dental care.

Health centers are a bipartisan program, but even strong support doesn’t guarantee survival in Washington. I encourage our leaders in Congress to urge for stable and long-term funding for health centers. Let’s hope they act soon in passing legislation before time runs out.

Jeff Britton, CEO

Ohio Hills Health Services

Barnesville