Maine Primary Care Association Board of Directors Appoints Darcy Shargo New CEO

Augusta, ME – Dec. 19, 2017 – The Board of Directors of Maine Primary Care Association (MPCA), a membership organization representing the collective voices of Maine’s Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), is pleased to announce that Darcy Shargo has been appointed Chief Executive Officer. An accomplished executive, Shargo brings to her position nearly 20 years of progressive non-profit experience in the health care industry, having served the last seven years as MPCA’s Chief Operating Officer.

“We’re thrilled to have Darcy Shargo serve as CEO of the Maine Primary Care Association,” said Martin Sabol, Director of Health Services at Nasson Health Care and Chairman of the Board, Maine Primary Care Association. “Her calm wisdom, experience with all facets of the organization and insightful knowledge of the complex regulatory environment that engulfs community health centers is impressive and positions us well to achieve our goals of making health care accessible and affordable to all.”

Amidst the changing federal and state health care landscape, the MPCA Board of Directors conducted a nationwide search for a proven executive best suited to lead MPCA and its membership. After a careful review of nearly 70 qualified candidates and multiple rounds of interviews, the Board of Directors unanimously voted on December 12 to appoint Shargo as MPCA’s new CEO.

Commenting on her appointment, Shargo said, “I am deeply grateful for the chance to serve and support Maine’s Community Health Centers in my new capacity as CEO. Over the course of my eleven years with MPCA, I have seen Maine’s health centers evolve into some of the most collaborative, patient-focused and compassionate caregivers in the state. I look forward to collaborating with our health centers and the incredible MPCA staff to build the next iteration of community-based primary care in our state.”

In addition to her role as Chief Operating Officer at MPCA, Shargo also previously served the Association as Health Care Access Program Manager. Other work experience includes program and leadership roles with Consumers for Affordable Health Care, Maine Hospital Association, Rape Crisis Assistance and Prevention and the Office of MaineCare Services.

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Maine Primary Care Association Announces Winners of the 2017 Clinical and Administrative Excellence Awards

Bar Harbor, ME – Oct. 18, 2017 – The Maine Primary Care Association (MPCA), a membership organization representing the collective voices of Maine’s Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), is pleased to announce the winners of the 2017 Clinical and Administrative Excellence Awards which were presented today at a ceremony during the organization’s annual conference in Bar Harbor. The Clinical and Administrative Excellence Awards were created in 2005 to honor the contributions and accomplishments of individuals and health center advocates working to ensure that affordable, high quality health care is available to all Mainers.

This year, MPCA recognized eight individuals for their leadership, dedication and support of Maine’s Community Health Centers. The 2017 award winners are as follows:

  • Clinical Support Excellence – Kristie Leighton, MA, Community Clinical Services
  • Unsung Hero – Jesse Harvey, Greater Portland Health
  • Nurse Practitioner Excellence – Amy Langley, FNP, PCHC
  • Behavioral Health Excellence – Marte McNally, LCPC, YCCAC/Nasson Health Care
  • Excellence in Oral Health (Co-recipient) – Israel Adeloye, DMD, Sacopee Valley Health Center
  • Excellence in Oral Health (Co-recipient) – Robert Grace, DMD, Nasson Health Care
  • MPCA Staff Excellence – Jeff Brown, MEd, Maine Primary Care Association
  • Carol Eckert, MD Memorial Award – Carol Eckert, MD, HealthReach Community Health Centers (posthumously)

Darcy Shargo, Interim CEO and COO of Maine Primary Care Association, said, “Today, we are pleased to celebrate the extraordinary accomplishments and compassionate care provided by the administrators, clinicians, and support staff at Maine’s Community Health Centers. It is because of the tireless work of these remarkable professionals that Maine people will always have someone to turn to for high quality, affordable health care when they need it most.”


Statewide celebration highlights critical role health centers play in ensuring access to affordable, high-quality healthcare for all Maine people

Augusta, ME – Aug. 14, 2017 – Over 30 events around the state are planned as part of National Health Center Week (NHCW). The statewide celebration runs August 13-19 with the goal of raising awareness about the mission and accomplishments of Maine’s 20 Federally Qualified Community Health Centers.

One of the bright spots in Maine’s health care system, Community Health Centers serve more than 210,000 individuals (1 in 6 Maine People), a number that continues to grow along with the demand for affordable, high-quality primary medical, dental and behavioral health services, at over 70 locations throughout the state. With more than 2,000 employees, Maine’s Community Health Centers have compiled a significant record of success and compassionate care that includes:

· Providing more than $16 million in uncompensated care in Maine last year;
· Delivering $7.5 million in free and reduced cost prescriptions to Mainers;
· Reducing unnecessary hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to the emergency department;
· Treating patients for a fraction of the average cost of one emergency department visit;
· Maintaining patient satisfaction levels of nearly 100 percent; and
· Ranking in the top five in the country per capita in assisting the uninsured and underinsured gain health insurance.

Health centers not only prevent illness and foster wellness in the most challenging populations they produce innovative solutions to the most pressing health care issues in our communities. They reach beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that may cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and opioid addiction. Because of their long record of success in innovation, managing health care costs and reducing chronic disease, health centers have a proud tradition of bipartisan support among Maine’s congressional delegation.

There are NHCW events scheduled across the state, including health fairs, back-to-school drives, blood drives, 5K run/walks, tai chi and yoga classes, patient appreciation events, free health screenings and dental cleanings, and much more. To view a complete listing of NHCW events click here.


Augusta, ME – June 27, 2017 – “The Senate ‘Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017’ is anything but, and would be disastrous for Mainers, rural health care providers and our entire state’s economy. This bill, drafted in secret and with no public involvement in the process, will raise insurance premiums for older and rural Mainers, reduce access to affordable coverage for tens of thousands of individuals who rely on subsidies in order to purchase insurance, allow states to eliminate coverage for many essential health benefits and undermine the ability of Maine’s Community Health Centers to provide high quality, comprehensive primary and preventive care to those who need it most. Federal legislation that seeks to throw thousands of hard-working Mainers off their health insurance shouldn’t be celebrated–it should be soundly rejected. We applaud the leadership shown by Senators Collins and King in announcing their opposition to this bill and hope their colleagues follow their example by voting it down later this week.”


If approved, waiver application will lead to a further loss of health coverage for thousands of Mainers

Augusta, ME – May 17, 2017 – Vanessa Santarelli, CEO of the Maine Primary Care Association (MPCA), whose members include all 20 of Maine’s Community Health Centers (CHCs), will testify in opposition to the Department of Health and Human Services’ proposed Section 1115 Demonstration Waiver on MaineCare Reform at the Augusta Civic Center on Thursday, May 18, 2017. Collectively, Maine’s CHCs provide comprehensive, affordable, high quality primary and preventive health care services to approximately 210,000 Mainers, have over 2,040 employees and contributed over $311 million to the state’s economy last year.

If approved and implemented, the substantial changes contained in the Department’s waiver application will cause thousands of Mainers to lose health coverage, reduce critical resources for essential health care providers such as Community Health Centers, hospitals, and nursing homes, and make no marked reduction in inappropriate Emergency Department utilization.

According to Santarelli, “With the current uncertainty in the health care marketplace, this waiver application couldn’t come at a worse time. It also follows the Administration’s biennial budget proposal which seeks to eliminate health coverage for all 19 and 20 years olds through the MaineCare Program, as well as drop parental coverage from 100% federal poverty to 40%. This is an economic issue as much as it is about access to health care. The state should work to expand health coverage, not keep cutting it at the expense of those who need it most.”