Sunflower health plan

Special to the Union

LENEXA – Last year, Centene, the parent company of Sunflower Health Plan, and the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC) formed the Medicaid Telehealth Partnership to increase access to care among Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the partnership, Sunflower Health Plan today announced that it has awarded Konza Prairie Community Health Center in Junction City, Kan., with a financial grant to help them improve telehealth solutions.

Leveraging its grant, Konza will improve information technology infrastructure and expand telehealth services. The investment will allow Konza to increase its capacity to serve the health needs of Flint Hills area residents, creating a safe experience during the pandemic while also improving convenience and accessibility for all persons.

“As we have worked to continue to provide essential healthcare services to patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for a robust information technology infrastructure that supports access to telehealth services has never been more clear,” said Lee Wolf, Konza Prairie Community Health Center CEO. “Making sure patients have access to the services they need has required rethinking the way we provide healthcare. This funding will expand the capacity of our organization to provide alternative care methods, including telemedicine, curbside care, and home visits for patients throughout the region.”

While telehealth services saw increased adoption in the years before the pandemic, particularly in rural areas, moving in-person healthcare services to virtual environments quickened as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, not all healthcare providers have the resources to swiftly purchase equipment and provide the training and technical assistance necessary to manage telehealth platforms. Centene and NACHC recognized the new needs and worked with Sunflower Health Plan to make an impact locally, especially with traditionally underserved communities.

“The past year has drawn attention to the importance of telehealth solutions, as communities struggled to conveniently access healthcare services. This has also shined a light on the struggle of people in rural areas with limited healthcare providers,” said Michael Stephens, Sunflower Health Plan CEO and president. “By providing this telehealth grant, we’re not only helping Konza respond to the ongoing pandemic; we’re investing in the future health of the communities that we live in and serve.”

For more information about Konza, visit For more information about Sunflower Health Plan, visit

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