Located in Omaha’s historic livestock exchange building in Omaha, Nebraska, One World Community Health Center became an NHSC site in 1999 and serves the residents of south Omaha, Nebraska. OneWorld began as a volunteer clinic over 40 years ago and has now grown into the largest Community Health Center/NHSC site in Nebraska. The patient population it serves is diverse, with patients speaking 14 different languages. OneWorld has been visited by many HRSA administrators over the years, including Dr. Mary Wakefield. OneWorld’s vision is to be a “nationally recognized, cutting edge, best practice” health center and NHSC site, says its recruitment manager, Heather Christensen.
OneWorld spends a lot of time and energy on attracting those providers who have a career interest in primary care, especially with underserved populations. OneWorld looks for qualities in providers who match their mission of having a “huge heart.” During the interview process, OneWorld asks prospective candidates about their commitment to serving underserved populations. OneWorld has also found that the best way to find these candidates is by word of mouth. Most recently they hired a provider whose mother was cared for at the health center. This provider actually called OneWorld as she was ready to graduate and wanted to give back to the organization that helped her family so much.
OneWorld currently has 6 NHSC providers serving at their site, including Paul Beutler, MD; Penni West, CNM; Donna Faber, MD; Misty Swierczek, PA; Kara Higgins, CNM; and Regan MacKintosh, MD. “We have an excellent retention record,” according to Heather. Andrea Slokin, the CEO of OneWorld believes by working together, we have made retention of NHSC providers a huge success at the health center. Andrea is proud to say that the “NHSC gives our health center the extra bump in salary by offering loan repayment to enable us to keep pace with compensation in our marketplace…almost all of our NHSC providers stay once their loan repayment is completed, because of the culture, mission and vision of the health center.”
OneWorld has established partnerships with local academic institutions in Nebraska to further identify the providers who are committed to this work. Students from the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Creighton University Medical and Dental Schools rotate through as part of their residency training in community health. Once they gain this experience in school, many decide to work there after their training. ”It’s a great way to expose students to what work is like at OneWorld,”says Andrea.
The NHSC Loan Repayment Program has been a value-added bonus for OneWorld’s providers who have already demonstrated a commitment to serve underserved patients in south Omaha, Nebraska. This site is very proud of being an NHSC approved site and hopes to become a nationally recognized site someday. Way to go OneWorld!