Community Health Centers of Burlington (CHCB) is home to over 320 staff members, across eight different locations, serving 30,000 patients annually. The mission of CHCB is to improve the health of all those who live in the communities we serve, and, as with most things, it is all in the delivery. This series is produced by former CHCB nurse and current Board member Beth Reilly, to chronicle the many different people who make up the fabric of CHCB, and stitch together the variety of paths, passions, and experiences of those who rise to the occasion, each day, to provide outstanding health care for our community.
Scott McFarland joined CHCB in 2018 initially as a temp, but quickly transitioned to a full time employee in Patient Services at Riverside. Most recently, Scott became Lead Patient Services Representative, overseeing daily operations at CHCB’s Riverside, Safe Harbor, and Pearl Street locations. With a background in emergency services, Scott was drawn to CHCB as a workplace as it provides a way for him to continue to serve and support his local community, as well as work with an organization “where everyone does not just work here, they want to be here.”
Growing up in Scarborough, Maine, Scott fell in love with Vermont after attending St. Michael’s College and ultimately decided to live here after graduation. Scott likes to stay active outside of work and enjoys all games “video, board, and lawn.” He also trains as an endurance athlete, participating in obstacle courses such as “Spartan” races. Scott spends time watching foreign media, studying ancient mythology and “making terrible jokes at every possible opportunity.”
As Lead Patient Services Representative, Scott is typically based out of the Riverside Health Center; however, he reports “traveling around to wherever I am needed for the day.” Over the years, Scott has worked at both Medical and Dental front desks at Riverside, as well as Safe Harbor, Pearl Street, Good Health, and at our off-site vaccination clinics in Grande Isle. This patient-facing position is one that, according to Scott, requires much more than just checking patients in-and-out of their appointments. “We schedule appointments, handle patients’ paperwork, assist with bills and insurance authorizations, and whatever else a patient wants to ask us about when they come in,” he shares. As the Lead, Scott is often called upon to help sort out unusual patient requests or challenging situations.
When asked what brings him to work each day, Scott has two reasons: One is the “sense of duty” and ability to help people in their time of need; secondly are his coworkers, who he describes as “a fun loving, tight knit group that is always ready and willing to help each other with work, and crack a joke when things are getting too serious.” Scott is extremely proud of how his CHCB colleagues handled the Covid-19 pandemic. “We stayed open to provide care in the most critical of times and continued to help from the first shut down all the way to vaccinations. I could not be more proud to work with everyone here”.
Upon reflection of CHCB’s Mission statement, “Community Health Centers of Burlington (CHCB) improves the health of ALL within the communities we serve”, Scott concludes:
“This mission statement resonates very strongly with me. Medicine and wellness do not belong to any one person, one class, or one community. Every single human on this planet is a person first, no exceptions. I have made it my life’s duty to help all persons in need, both in and out of my career. Wellness goes far beyond medical care…and we as humans have a duty to help foster that wherever we go.”