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Policy & Issues Forum 2021

PMC1 - Supporting Special Populations During COVID-19

Mar 15, 2021 10:00am ‐ Mar 15, 2021 11:00am


The impact of COVID-19 on communities served by health centers has been profound, and this is acutely the case for homeless populations, residents of public housing, and migrant and seasonal farmworkers. These “special populations” – as defined in the 330 Statute – are served specifically, and in some cases solely, by community health centers. Each of these populations faces unique challenges in accessing testing, treatment, vaccines, and care during COVID-19. This session will showcase National Training and Technical Assistance Partners (NTTAPS) focused on homeless populations, farmworkers, and residents of public housing. Taking the form of a moderated panel, NTTAPs will highlight how health centers serving special populations approached COVID-testing, continue to provide access to care (whether through telehealth or in-person visits), and are rolling out vaccinations. NTTAPs will also highlight the unique, strategic decisions special population health centers have to make and consider – whether financial, operational, or clinical – when responding to COVID-19.

Learning Objectives:
  • Highlight challenges in responding to COVID-19 in "special populations" that historically experience heightened health inequities and barriers to care.
  • Provide successful examples of providing COVID testing, COVID vaccinations, and maintaining access to care for special populations served by health centers.
  • Describe financial and policy levers that facilitate health centers in responding to the needs of special populations during COVID.


  • Bethany Alcauter, MPH, PhD candidate, Manager, Evaluation and the National Ag Worker Health Program, National Center for Farmworker Health, Inc.
  • Robert Burns, MPA, Director, National Center for Health in Public Housing
  • Barbara DiPietro, PhD, Senior Director, Policy, National Health Care for the Homeless Council, Inc.


  • Ted Henson, MS, Director, Health Center Performance and Innovation, NACHC

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