Recent News


December 1, 2016

(Newburgh, NY)—Nearly five years ago, Cornerstone Family Healthcare began the Reach Out and Read Program (ROAR) in the pediatrics department to build on the unique relationship between parents and medical providers to develop essential early literacy skills in young children via the existing healthcare infrastructure. Each year, Reach Out and Read serves 4 million children across all 50 states, focusing on those in low-income families.

TO build on the success of the ROAR program Cornerstone will be partnering with Barnes and Noble to hold the Holiday Book Fair at Barnes and Noble Booksellers located at 1245 Route 300 in Newburgh, NY on Sunday, December 4th from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. A percentage of the proceeds from book sales and concessions will be donated to the Reach Out and Read Program at Cornerstone. The event will feature an Irish dance performance by the Farrell School of Irish Dance students at 11 a.m., holiday gift wrapping, children’s story time, and special themed health center treats and beverages.

ROAR is a nonprofit organization that trains and supports medical providers who give books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud at well-child exams. During regular pediatric checkups, Reach Out and Read pediatricians, family physicians, and nurse practitioners give new, developmentally-appropriate books to children, ages 6 months through 5 years, and advise parents about the importance of reading aloud.  The ROAR program is in its 8th year and has distributed over 16,000 books.

Cornerstone Family Healthcare Pediatrician Dr. Alicia Pointer, DO emphasizes that reading out loud is the most important thing parents can do to help their children’s language and reading skills.

“The Reach Out and Read program has given me the opportunity to ‘prescribe’ a book to families at their well-child checks and discuss the many values of reading out loud. The program provides families with a library of wonderful books and the tools to create a lifetime love of learning while children are spending quality time with their parents,” said Dr. Pointer.

The first five years of life offer a critical window for learning, with rapid brain development that does not occur at any other time. Many children, especially from low-income families, are not read to from birth. Children who grow up without sufficient exposure to language arrive at school without basic literacy skills, and often struggle with reading in early grades.

By having our providers “prescribe” books, young patients gain literacy skills that positively impact their attention span and school performance. Cornerstone Family Healthcare’s providers are committed to helping their pediatric patients grow up to be strong and healthy while also stimulating their minds to be the best they can be.


(Newburgh, NY)—An estimated 1.5 million people are living with HIV in this region, including 140,000 newly infected in 2014. The epidemic is driven primarily by injecting drugs, although heterosexual transmission also plays an important role.


World AIDS Day is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, and show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have passed away.


On Thursday, December 1, 2016 World AIDS Day will be recognized at Cornerstone Family Healthcare with an educational event offering free testing for the community. The event will feature presentations from 12:30 p.m.-2 p.m. at 147 Lake Street in Newburgh from Cornerstone’s Positive Choices HIV Center about HIV prevention; Hudson Valley Community Services will participate by providing attendees with basic information about HIV; and free HIV testing will be provided by Planned Parenthood from 2 p.m.-4:30 p.m. Lunch will be provided to the first 20 people to register with the Health Education department by calling (845) 563-8043. The event will take place. Walk-ins are welcome as well.


Cornerstone’s Positive Choices Center was established with the reduction of the stigma in mind and to give people who are HIV positive and those that fear becoming HIV positive a place to feel safe. The staff at Positive Choices will hold the hand of patients who are scared and confused and guide them into treatment. The program is a longtime AIDS Institute grantee, providing confidential outreach and counseling services for patients living with HIV and AIDS, including STI testing, HIV primary care and infectious disease management, case management, prevention programs including PrEP, outreach and education, advocacy, support groups, and other related services to people living with HIV and high-risk HIV-negative patients. Counselors are trained in telling loved ones about their diagnosis and provide constant education about living a normal life while keeping the illness under control.


Cornerstone’s newest offering in HIV prevention, PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis), puts the power of prevention in the hands of HIV negative people. The delivery of the anti-HIV medication, Truvada, keeps HIV negative people from becoming infected. PrEP is approved by the FDA and has been shown to be safe and effective. PrEP is useful to men and women who are at high-risk for contracting HIV to protect themselves from becoming infected.


If a patient is exposed to HIV through sex or injection drug use and takes PrEP, the medication will work to keep the virus from taking hold in your body.


“Through more than 25 years of serving clients with HIV, it has been learned that many clients drop out of care or forego care altogether out of fear of being ‘outted’ as an HIV/AIDS patient,” said Dr. Rocco Russo, MD a primary care provider at Cornerstone Family Healthcare. “As a result of this fear, clients often worry about being seen by friends, neighbors or family accessing care from the Positive Choices Center.”


Dr. Russo is highly involved with the Positive Choices Center and HIV prevention. Aside from being a primary care physician at the Highland Falls office, he also sees patients once a week at the Positive Choice Center to make sure their patients are receiving primary care services. Overall health is crucial in controlling HIV. Dr. Russo regularly advocates for PrEP and its benefit to the community especially during the HIV/AIDS epidemic.


In June, Cornerstone Family Healthcare was awarded $1 million by the New York State Department of Health to fund the PrEP program’s efforts to increase the number of high-risk HIV-negative patients in our service area. The project will include comprehensive, targeted outreach and education, HIV testing, prescribing of PrEP medications, and ongoing counseling and case management as needed.


Marilyn Morales, director of Positive Choice Center, believes that this grant will give Cornerstone the opportunity to bring the community one step closer to living without the fear of HIV/AIDS. “We needed this grant to move the community to a new vision for HIV prevention and treatment, one where new infections are rare, and persons with HIV live with few complications,” said Morales.


Cornerstone strives to provide access to high-quality, comprehensive, primary and preventative health care services in an environment of caring, respect, and dignity regardless of one’s ability to pay. As an accessible point of HIV care providing PrEP, the funds now available to the organization will improve the quality of life for HIV exposed patients.


For more information about Cornerstone Family Healthcare or the Positive Choices Center visit


Attendees of Cornerstone Family Healthcare's 17th Annual Pillars of the Community Gala held at Anthony's Pier 9 on Saturday, November 5, 2016. Hudson Valley Press/CHUCK STEWART, JR.Attendees of Cornerstone Family Healthcare's 17th Annual Pillars of the Community Gala held at Anthony's Pier 9 on Saturday, November 5, 2016. Hudson Valley Press/CHUCK STEWART, JR.

(Newburgh, NY)— On Saturday, November 5 over 450 community leaders and friends of Cornerstone Family Healthcare gathered at Anthony’s Pier 9 to celebrate a remarkable year of growth for the Health Center and to pay tribute to three distinguished “Pillars of the Community” who have significantly contributed to making a difference in the quality of life in our region. This year’s event was successful in raising 80 percent of the needed monies to purchase a new Mobile Dental Unit that will bring services directly to the people of our region who face obstacles in accessing transportation to dental care. The new dental unit will aim to serve the homeless and senior citizens, as well as provide dental screenings at schools.


“There is a working relationship between good oral health and overall health that many people don’t realize,” said Cornerstone’s Chief of Dentistry and Pillars Clinical Co-Chair Alban Burke, DDS. “Bacteria that build up on teeth make gums prone to infection, the immune system tries to fight the infection, and the gums become inflamed.  This inflammation and the chemicals it releases eat away at gums and bone structure leading to gum disease and other problems within the body.”


Dr. Burke also recognizes the relationship between gum disease and diabetes. Cornerstone serves a large population of diabetics and there are continuous quality improvement projects around the disease. High blood sugar provides ideal conditions for infection to grow, including gum infections. Fortunately, managing one can help bring the other under control.


When dealing with the hardships of inadequate living conditions, individuals do not have their health as their top priority.  Access to affordable healthcare is important for the well-being of families. Without access to care, individual’s health deteriorates and trying to manage day-to-day living becomes un-manageable. A mobile dental unit will meet people where they are at to make receiving care one less worry. It will also help conquer two obstacles: cost and accessibility.


“I’m thrilled with the continuous support Cornerstone has received from the community in their efforts to expand dental services with the mobile unit,” said Larry Lipman, son of former community dentist Dr. Everett Lipman and co-chair of the campaign. “We hope to have the dental unit up and running as soon as possible to motivate people to take care of their teeth and get their screenings.”


Those without access to dental services such as the homeless and senior citizen populations are typically not aware of the link between oral health and overall health. This state-of-the-art dental office on wheels will not only provide dental services, but the medical staff on-board will constantly educate the individuals they encounter about this working relationship.


Surveys have shown that low income children are at increased risk for oral health problems. Lack of affordable dental care is a major barrier to the receipt of timely and periodic preventive care by children. The mobile dental unit will visit schools to provide children with their dental evaluations and decrease the number of children with untreated dental caries, or permanently damaged areas in teeth that develop into tiny holes.


“The success thus far in this campaign is a testament to the generosity of people who believe community health is top priority,” said Regina McGrade, vice president of marketing and development at Cornerstone. “But we’re not there yet; we as a community need to keep pushing to support those the mobile units serve.”


In the past year, up to 30% of uninsured emergency room visits could have been better treated in a dental office. These visits cost, on average, three times as much as a routine dental visit. Dental ER visits could be avoided all together, if patients saw a dentist on a regular basis.


Pillars of the Community Honorees:

Lifetime Achievement Award, Derrik R. Wynkoop, president and CEO of Walden Savings Bank

Distinguished Service Award, Thomas D. Weddell, CPA, managing partner at Vanacore, DeBenedictus, DiGovanni & Weddell LLP

Distinguished Service Award,  Community Foundation of Orange & Sullivan, led by Elizabeth Rowley


For more information about Cornerstone Family Healthcare or the campaign for the mobile dental unit, visit


Good individual health begins with good community health and equal access to health-promoting opportunities.  As a leading provider of community-based primary and preventative healthcare, Cornerstone Family Healthcare reaches beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and addiction.


In honor of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, Cornerstone is shining a light on the direct relationship between health disparities and health outcomes by holding a special Farm Stand for community members in need. The Farm Stand will offer an array of free fruits and vegetables generously donated in partnership with the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley. The Farm Stand will be held at Cornerstone’s Harper Health location, 290 Broadway in Newburgh on Tuesday, Nov. 22, 2016 from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m.


One of Cornerstone’s overarching goals as a community health center is to help to eliminate health disparities within the communities they serve. Lack of nutrition, stable housing, education, and access to care are all examples of the ways an individual’s health outcomes are impacted.

“The absence of a disease does not automatically equate to good health,” said Diahan Scott, vice president of outreach and external programs for Cornerstone Family Healthcare. “Residential instability and homelessness is personally stressful and made worse by being exposed to things like malnutrition.”


When people have stable housing, they no longer need to prioritize finding a place to sleep each night and can spend more time managing their health, making time for doctors’ appointments, and adhering to medical advice and direction. Stable housing significantly lowers the risk of chronic disease, such as hypertension, asthma, diabetes, and mental health conditions and addiction.

Barbara Moschitta, registered dietitian at Cornerstone says that although stable housing is key component to establishing good health, individuals are also faced with a host of other structural barriers when it comes to nutrition. When creating a treatment plan for a newly diagnosed diabetic patient, the conversation frequently leads to the socio-economic barriers that often prohibit success in getting their diabetes under control. According to Moschitta, among the top three are lack of choice in nearby stores offering fresh produce, transportation and the cost. “When there are societal barriers to accessing healthy food, or food in general, it exacerbates the disparity,” said Moschitta.

Cornerstone Family Healthcare’s Harper Health program is open to all individuals, however, provides programs and services aimed at those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness in a safe, confidential, judgement-free environment.


For more information about Cornerstone Family Healthcare or Harper Health, visit


Cornerstone Family Healthcare Presents Program for American Cancer Society Great American Smokeout®. Support can make all the difference.


Newburgh, NY – If you’re a smoker, quitting can be the hardest, yet single most important step you take to protect your health and the health of your loved ones. That’s why Cornerstone Family Healthcare is delighted to partner with the American Cancer Society to host a free program open to the public on Thursday, November 17, 2016 in observance of the American Cancer Society’s Great American Smokeout®. This annual nationally-observed initiative encourages smokers to quit or make a plan to quit each year on the third Thursday in November. This year’s event will take place in Newburgh at Cornerstone Family Healthcare, 147 Lake Street, from 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m. and will introduce smokers to the many options and supports available that can aid in the rewarding journey of becoming a Nonsmoker.


Additional partners, Catholic Charities Community Services of Orange and Sullivan, the Orange County Department of Health, and P’OWR Against Tobacco will engage participants in individual and group discussions and provide useful information on topics such as, how tobacco is affecting their life, how to get ready to quit, making quit plan, and how to conquer the withdrawal symptoms from nicotine. A hypnotherapist and acupuncturist, funded by the Department of Health, will be on hand demonstrating how their services aid in smoking cessation.

While cigarette smoking rates have dropped, it is estimated that 40 million Americans still smoke cigarettes – threatening their future with increased risk for cancer, heart attack, lung disease, and early death. Cigar, pipe and hookah – other ways to smoke tobacco – are very much on the rise.  Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the US – that’s 1 in every 5 adults.


“Participating in the Great American Smokeout is a must for Cornerstone,” says Annia Reyes, Health Education Coordinator at Cornerstone Family Healthcare. “Research shows that smokers are most successful in quitting when they have support. Whether it’s lending an ear to listen to what obstacles they may be facing and suggesting a course of action, or just providing a few words of encouragement, my goal is to do what we can to aid in breaking the cycle and get them on their way to good, lasting health.”


Cornerstone Family Healthcare, in partnership with the Orange County Department of Health’s Tobacco Use Prevention and Control Program, provides a four-part series Smoking Cessation program that runs year-round. To find out more on the Smoking Cessation program, please call Cornerstone Family Healthcare at 845-563-8043.


For more information on the Great American Smokeout® visit

For more information on POW’R Against Tobacco visit

For more information on Catholic Charities Community Services of Orange and Sullivan visit

For more information on Cornerstone Family Healthcare visit




(Newburgh, NY)— Mary Macdonald and Robin Pettway, two close friends and two patients at Cornerstone Family Healthcare hosted the first diabetic-friendly Halloween celebration on October 27, 2016 at Cornerstone’s Lake Street office.


This past summer, Macdonald and Pettway met in Cornerstone’s Living Well with Diabetes health education course. The two have built a special bond through spending time together in the 12-week course.


“Mary had this great idea and all I could say was let’s do it,” said Pettway.


Macdonald has been with Cornerstone for over 25 years participating in the Living Well with Diabetes and Managing Your Health education programs. “I don’t know what I would do without these classes,” said Macdonald. “They gave me the zest to fight my illness, taught me how to manage my health, and gave me an outlet to be around people going through the same thing.”


Pettway has been with Cornerstone for six years also participating the diabetes and health management programs. This long time City of Newburgh resident is an avid volunteer in the community in organizations and events including Newburgh Illuminated, Cupcake-a-Palooza, and the annual Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk. Pettway enjoys volunteering as much as possible because she believes it is important to be involved in helping the community.


Halloween tends to be all about candy. The diabetic-friendly celebration was created as a chance to take a break and have some fun while still being healthy.


Macdonald and Pettway wanted to show the community that people with diabetes are not a special population and they can enjoy every holiday just like everyone else, minus the sweets.


Attendees participated in exercise classes such as Zumba and Turbo Kick Live while enjoying healthy snacks provided by Macdonald and Pettway. The two ladies took the lead on decorating and organizing this event.


Cornerstone Family Healthcare’s Living Well with Diabetes class helps patients with diabetes take control of their health. Lessons learned in the course include stress reduction, weekly goal planning, changing habits, healthy eating, understanding food labels, etc. These two ladies are great examples of how health education programs truly make a difference in your quality of life.


The program offers insight from Cornerstone’s medical providers H. Janelle Carr, DNP, PhD and Sneha Shrivastava, MD, Barbara Moschitta, registered dietician and the health education team.


Pettway refused to let diabetes affect her quality of life after witnessing how it affected both of her parents.  “I’ve seen what diabetes can do and I just need to stay healthy,” said Pettway. “I was diagnosed as pre-diabetic and since beginning this class I have lost weight, changed my diet, eat more vegetables, drink more water and look at food labels differently. Now I am doing much better,” said Pettway.


At Cornerstone, there are 1,500 diabetic patients and over half are controlling their condition. In addition to current efforts in diabetes management, Cornerstone is set to launch a new grant-funded program in the coming months. As a result of quality and innovation in our efforts to manage patient diabetes, Cornerstone was recently recognized by Becton Dickinson, Direct Relief and the National Association of Community Health Centers with an Innovations in Care Award, as one of only 10 across the country to receive this award.


“Bridging Gaps: Improving Continuity for Patients with Diabetes” will be an innovative program enhancing access to comprehensive diabetes care for patients in the Hudson Valley Region of New York State. This program aims to facilitate diabetic or pre-diabetic patients’ attainment of their health goals, and differentiates itself from others by providing a highly integrated, comprehensive system of care that takes into account patients’ medical, financial, social, and familial needs.


(Newburgh, NY)—Cornerstone Family Healthcare’s rapidly expanding foot print has increased the need for committed providers. We welcome these six providers to a team that is dedicated to providing high-quality health care to the communities we serve.


carin-shapiro-md-8-2016Carin Shapiro, MD received her Medical Doctorate Degree from The Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, NY. She completed her residency at the University of Connecticut in the Asylum Hill Family Practice Residency Program. Dr. Shapiro also holds a Masters Degree in Public Health from New York Medical College School of Public Health. She is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. Her clinical interests are around development disabilities. Previously, she taught as an instructor of family and community medicine at New York Medical College and as a preceptor for the family nurse practitioner program at Dominican College. The Rockland County Association for the Learning Disabled/Young Adult Institute presented her as the Humanitarian of the Year in 2012.  Dr. Shapiro is seeing patients in the Internal medicine department of Cornerstone’s New Windsor office.


Penelope Guccione Headshot For WebsitePenelope Guccione, MS, FNP received her Family Advanced Practice Nursing degree from the Colombia University School of Nursing. Guccione was honored as a Colombia University School of Nursing Alumni Association Scholar. She is board-certified by the American Nurses Credentialing Center. Hypertension is one of her clinical interests. Guccione is seeing patients in the Internal Medicine department of Cornerstone’s 147 Lake Street office in Newburgh.









Agnes Champone

Agnes Compagnone, PA-C received her Physician Assistant certificate from Essex Community College. She also recently received her Post-Professional PA Degree and Advanced Degree Certificate in Health Care Management from Stony Brook University. She is board-certified by the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants. Compagnone was previously the Clinical Director for Mount Saint Mary College’s Physician Assistant Studies Program and was the President and CEO of “An Ounce of Prevention,” a global provider of health, wellness screening and education services. Her clinical interests include preventative care and patient-provider relations. She will be seeing patients in the Urgent Care department of Cornerstone’s 147 Lake Street office in Newburgh.









luanne-codella-md-8-2016LuAnne Codella, MD received her Medical Doctorate Degree from the Case Western University School of Medicine in Cleveland, OH. She completed residencies at the Cambridge Hospital Health Alliance, Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Dr. Codella is board-certified by the American Board of Internal medicine. She is also a Traditional Oriental Medicine graduate of the program at the Academy of Chinese Culture and Health Sciences in Oakland, CA. There, Dr. Codella was an instructor to first and second year medical students in pathology, pediatrics and women’s health. She is seeing patients in the Internal Medicine department of Cornerstone’s New Windsor office.






herma-dave-do-9-2016Hema Dave, DO received her Doctor of Osteopathy Degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. She completed her residency at the Mountainside Family Practice Residency Program in Montclair, NJ where she was the Chairperson for the Practice Management Committee and the Quality Assurance Committee. She is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. Dr. Dave has worked in a private practice in Stony Point, NY for 10 years and continues to do so as well as be a part of the Cornerstone team. She is seeing patients in the Internal Medicine department of Cornerstone’s 147 Lake Street office in Newburgh.






Alicia Pointer, DO updated 82316Alicia Pointer, DO received her Doctor of Osteopathy Degree from the University of New England College Of Osteopathic Medicine in Biddeford, ME. She completed her residency at Tufts University School of Medicine in their Baystate Medical Center program in Springfield, MA. In Springfield she was also a pediatrician for two years with The Caring Health Center where she was the Medical Director of “Fit Kids” Pediatric Weight Clinic and a Clinical Preceptor. Dr. Pointer is board-certified by the American Board of Pediatrics. Some of her clinical interests include toxic stress, foster care, immigrant and refugee health, literacy and parent education. Dr. Pointer is seeing patients in the Pediatrics department of Cornerstone’s 147 Lake Street office in Newburgh.




(Newburgh, NY)—Cornerstone Family Healthcare, a non-profit leader in accessible, affordable, high-quality primary and oral health care, recently announced the promotion of Alban C. Burke, DDS to Chief of Dentistry.


Transitioning from a career in private practice, Dr. Burke joined the dental department at Cornerstone’s 147 Lake Street office in Newburgh in May of 2015. Prior to his rapidly successful journey at Cornerstone, Burke owned and operated two dental offices in Manhattan and the Bronx for 20 years.


Burke is a 1994 graduate of the New York University College of Dentistry and completed his fellowship at Mount Sinai Medical Center. He completed his residency at Colombia University’s School of Dentistry in New York, where he later taught for five years. In 2004, Burke was appointed to the NYS Board of Dentistry by the Governor of NYS, where he served two five-year terms. Burke’s extensive skills and experience has led him to focus the last five to eight years of his career on placing and restoring dental implants as well as cosmetic dentistry.


As the Chief of Dental, Dr. Burke’s top priority will be to ensure the continued growth of Cornerstone’s dental program by working to eliminate persistent and systemic barriers that limit an individual’s access to oral health care. Today, he is responsible for three dental sites in Newburgh and Goshen, and will bring another site on line in Rockland County in early 2017. Dr. Burke is also championing Cornerstone’s fundraising efforts to purchase a mobile dental vehicle for those who are homeless; seniors affected by transportation and mobility issues and elementary school children.


As a native of the Bronx, Dr. Burke holds the work of community health center’s close. As a kid, his family health needs were met by a local Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC). “Early on, the health center was an impactful part of my upbringing,” said Burke. “At an early age, my mother would always instill in us the importance of giving back. After leaving private practice, I saw my service at a community health center as a means and opportunity to give back. The bold leadership, growth history and vision are what lead me to Cornerstone.”


Burke’s special interests include: research linking the relationship between periodontal disease and Alzheimer’s disease; dental implants; the metrics of clinical practice; and the finance of dentistry.


“I have always been active in organized dentistry and have worked extremely hard to pursue leadership situations at each level within an organization, I’m grateful to have been presented with this opportunity.” Burke says. “I have many plans for the future of dentistry at Cornerstone, and my commitment to the oral and overall health of the people of my community will be at the heart of every decision.”

Cornerstone Family Healthcare deploys new state-of-the-art Mobile Health Vehicle with Orange County Executive at County Housing Shelter

(Middletown & Newburgh, N.Y.)— In recognition of Healthcare for the Homeless Day, elected officials and community supporters of Cornerstone Family Healthcare gathered at HONOR, Orange County’s transitional housing shelter in Middletown on Wednesday to celebrate the launch of the health center’s new mobile medical van. The van, made possible by a $200,000 grant from Affinity Health Plan, will enable the non-profit community health center to greatly expand health care services and provide primary care to a greater number of homeless individuals, and individuals in transition, who otherwise do not have access to basic healthcare.


April Gozza, senior director of public relations and government affairs at Cornerstone opened the event by acknowledging the unique roll that community health centers play in reaching beyond the walls of conventional medicine to address the factors that may cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and addiction. “Homelessness is a significant barrier to good health. Poor nutrition, inadequate hygiene, exposure to violence and weather-related illness and injury, increased risk of contracting communicable diseases, and the constant stress of housing instability all contribute to the health issues faced by individuals facing homelessness.”


In 2015, Health Centers across America treated 1.1 million homeless patients. One thousand were treated in Orange County by Cornerstone Family Healthcare.


The launch of the mobile health van came on Healthcare for the Homeless Day. Healthcare for the Homeless Day is recognized each year in August during National Health Center Week and celebrates the work and services that health centers and their community partners bring to this special population.


“Access to healthcare is our number one priority,” said David Jolly, chief operating officer for Cornerstone Family Healthcare who spoke about how community health centers are uniquely positioned to address certain public health challenges. “We have made key investments in innovative solutions to confront these challenges filling significant healthcare gaps.”


The new state-of-the-art mobile health vehicle is furnished with two ample-sized exam rooms and is equipped with a family nurse practitioner (FNP) and supporting care delivery team, supplying a wide range of healthcare treatment options ranging from acute and chronic illness care to physical examinations, immunizations, and laboratory testing. Assistance with health insurance enrollment is also available as well as linkage and referral to community supports.


“Removing barriers and meeting patients where they’re at is what sets us apart. If transportation is an issue, there is no reason to try and reinvent transportation; we can deliver the same quality healthcare remotely.” Jolly said.


Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus acknowledged in his remarks the complexity of public health and recognized County agencies for working together to strengthen the partnership between Cornerstone, HONOR and other community-based organizations to protect and improve the public’s health. “The core of every responsibility we have is healthcare,” said Neuhaus.


Executive Director of HONOR Chris Molinelli rejoiced as he called himself “the most privileged man at the podium” introducing Labriska Brown and her 8 year old son Nishone Brown, residents of the shelter. Brown shared her heartfelt journey from stable housing to the shelter as a result of domestic violence. Brown utilizes the mobile health unit for routine care for her and her son. “Everybody faces hardships,” said Brown.  “I’m not homeless, I am temporarily without a permanent address. Life happens. I’m not poor. Besides, the richest man is a healthy man.” Brown closed with a request to elected officials and policy makers, “I’m asking from the bottom of my heart to continue the work that you are doing, helping me; and there are others. Without my health, I have nothing.”


The mobile van is made possible by Affinity Health Plan. Affinity shares Cornerstone’s mission to provide access to affordable, high quality, cost effective primary care to members.  Edina Vukic, executive director of primary care and vice president of sales and community engagement for Affinity Health Plan says, “Affinity is committed to partnering with our community providers, and this mobile health van was made possible through a long standing relationship and our commitment Cornerstone.”


The new mobile van will be in service at the following Orange County locations:

The Emergency Housing Shelter at Honor, 38 Seward Avenue, Middletown, Tuesday and Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.


Newburgh Ministries, 9 Johnston Street, Newburgh, Thursday, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.


Ecclesia House, 91 Ann Street, Newburgh, first Wednesday of the month, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.


Hudson House, 245 Broadway, Newburgh, second Wednesday of the month, 9 a.m. – 12 p.m.


YAP, 44 Grand Street, Newburgh, second Wednesday of the month, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.


United Methodist Church, 245 Liberty Street, Newburgh, third Wednesday of the month, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.


Hudson Valley Inn, 5180 Route 9W, Newburgh, fourth Wednesday of the month, 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.


For more information on Cornerstone’s mobile health programs or Harper Health for individuals and families in housing transition, visit

To view the Presidential Proclamation on National Health Center Week, visit

Celebrating America’s Health Centers: Innovators in Community Health

July 29, 2016



(Newburgh, N.Y.) — National Health Center Week has been celebrated for more than 30 years to recognize the services and contributions of Community, Migrant, Homeless and Public Housing Health Centers. While there are countless reasons to celebrate America’s Health Centers, among the most important and unique is their long success in providing access to affordable, high quality, cost effective health care to medically vulnerable and underserved people throughout the United States.


From August 7-13th, hundreds of community events are being planned by over 1,200 health centers around the country with the goal of raising awareness of the critical role community health centers play in assuring access to health care.


Locally, Cornerstone Family Healthcare will participate in the week-long national campaign by hosting multiple events to promote the health center’s fifty-year mission of providing access to comprehensive primary and preventative health care services to thousands of people in the mid-Hudson Valley, especially those who are uninsured or experience other barriers to care.


One of the bright spots in America’s healthcare system, health centers started over 50 years ago as a pilot project during President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. Today, they have compiled a significant record of success that includes:


  • Producing $24 billion in annual health system savings
  • Reducing unnecessary hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to the emergency room
  • Treating patients for a fraction of the average cost of one emergency room visit
  • Maintaining patient satisfaction levels of nearly 100 percent
  • Generating $26.5 billion in economic activity and over 230,000 jobs
  • Reducing infant mortality rates


Health centers not only prevent illness and foster wellness in the most challenging populations, they produce innovative solutions to the most pressing healthcare issues in their 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 addiction. Because of their long record of success in innovation, managing healthcare costs, and reducing chronic disease, leaders in Congress have declared health centers a model of care that offers a “bipartisan solution to the primary care access problems” facing our nation.


“We are more than just a primary healthcare provider,” said Linda Muller, president & ceo of Cornerstone Family Healthcare. “We’re policy advocates. We’re health educators. We’re community partners. We’re an economic driver. We’re not here just to treat people when they’re sick, we’re here to foster healthy communities. This week is about celebrating the victories of a health program that has delivered these results for over 50 years.”


Cornerstone community events in celebration of National Health Center Week:

Friday, August 5, 8 p.m., Family Movie Night, outdoors at 147 Lake St., Newburgh. Refreshments. Summer give-aways.


Saturday, August 6, 9 a.m., Family Walk for Health, 147 Lake St., Newburgh. Walk teams encouraged. Live radio, child give-aways, prizes.


Wednesday August 10, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m., Mobile Health Unit ribbon cutting in honor of National Healthcare for the Homeless Day, HonorEhg, 38 Seward Ave., Middletown. Dental and optometry health assessments. Positive Choices HIV Center Outreach. Distribution of back to school supplies.


Friday, August 12, 8 p.m., Family Movie Night, outdoors at 147 Lake Street, Newburgh. Refreshments. Summer give-aways.


Saturday, August 13, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m., Community Health Fair, 147 Lake St., Newburgh. Health screenings, children’s activities, free car seat exchange/fitting, health food, American Red Cross blood drive, raffles/prizes.


For more information about Cornerstone Family Healthcare and National Health Center Week events, please visit:


To learn more about National Health Center Week and the listing of national, state and local events, please visit: