PRESS RELEASE / ANNOUNCEMENTS Thursday, September 8, 2016

Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics Receives National Award for Innovation in Care

Chicago, Illinois—September 8, 2016— Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics was honored by BD, Direct Relief and the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) with an Innovations in Care Award at the 2016 Community Health Institute and EXPO in Chicago. Part of the BD Helping Build Healthy Communities™ initiative, this $100,000 award acknowledges community health centers for innovative approaches to the prevention and treatment of diseases that disproportionately affect vulnerable populations.

Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics (SBNC) was recognized for its collaboration with William Sansum Diabetes Center and the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County, on an innovative approach to diabetes care that links community outreach and education with food and medical care. This collaboration was initiated through grant funding from Cottage Health and has grown into a comprehensive program, which supports the multi-dimensional needs of patients with pre-diabetes and diabetes. The collaboration connects screening, medical care, care management, education and food resources to support people with elevated sugar levels.

“We are thrilled to come together with Willian Sansum Diabetes Center and Foodbank of Santa Barbara County to tighten the safety-net for patients through the provision of comprehensive diabetes services,” said Dr. Charles Fenzi, CEO of Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics. “The Innovations in Care Award acknowledges the importance of collaboration between medical providers and other organizations in improving the health of our community. We are grateful to our collaborators and funders who have made this program possible.”

SBNC is a 501(c)3, non-profit healthcare organization dedicated to providing quality, affordable, medical and dental care to those in need in Santa Barbara County, regardless of one’s ability to pay. Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics serves the medical, dental and behavioral health needs of over 18,000 patients, including over 1,000 patients living with diabetes, at four medical clinics and two dental clinics throughout the community.

“A strong network of community health centers is critical to improve access to our health system, and this year’s winners represent what’s possible for community health in the U.S.,” said Vincent A. Forlenza, Chairman, CEO and President of BD. “The wellness, prevention and care community health centers provide help avoid unnecessary hospital visits and sometimes represent the only care for some of our country’s most vulnerable populations.”

A total of 10 community health centers were recognized this year. Decisions on innovation award winners are guided by a panel of reviewers with expertise in clinical and community healthcare in each of the three disease areas.

“The Innovations in Care Award recognizes the Santa Barbara Neighborhoods Clinics for their critical role in strengthening the safety net in Santa Barbara,” said Thomas Tighe, President and CEO at Direct Relief. “Direct Relief is delighted to work with BD and NACHC to highlight and elevate health centers such as Santa Barbara Neighborhood Clinics. Having witnessed firsthand their commitment, insight, and effectiveness in serving their patients, this award is very well deserved.”

For more information about the 2016 Innovations in Care Award winners, including project information and photos, please visit

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