April 21, 2023

Notice to Patients: Ending of Public Health Emergency

Dear Lowell Community Health Center Patients, 
The COVID-19 Public Health Emergency ends on May 11, 2023. The Public Health Emergency allowed special permissions to health providers to care for you and your family during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Here is some information about what this change means for you at Lowell Community Health Center, starting May 12, 2023. Guidelines from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts are still being finalized, and we will provide additional updates as necessary. 

As of May 12, masks will no longer be required within Lowell Community Health Center. Masks are strongly recommended for anyone with a cough, fever, sneezing, shortness of breath, or with other symptoms. 

Masks are available in the health center at all times if you are more comfortable wearing one for medical or personal reasons. 

During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency, patients have been able to get controlled substances during a virtual care phone or video visit. Examples of controlled substances include:  

  • Opioid pain medications (for example: oxycodone) 
  • Anxiety medications (for example: clonazepam) 
  • Sleep medications (for example: zolpidem) 
  • Other medications (for example: phentermine for weight loss)  

Starting on May 12, if you take these medications regularly, you may need to have an in-person visit to continue getting them. Your care team will contact you if you need an in-person visit to renew your medications. 
Also starting May 12, patients may need to see their provider in-person before starting controlled substances for the first time. 
COVID-19 Vaccines: 
Insurances, including Medicare and Medicaid (Mass Health), will continue to cover the cost of COVID-19 vaccines after the Public Health Emergency ends. There may be a co-pay for your vaccine, depending on your insurance plan. 
Check with your insurance company if you have questions about the cost of a COVID-19 vaccine. 
COVID-19 Testing: 
Tests ordered by a provider – Your insurance company will continue to cover the cost of COVID-19 testing when a provider orders the test, if you have been exposed or have symptoms. Elective testing, such as for travel, may not be covered. 

At-home testing – Most insurance companies will no longer reimburse you for buying at-home COVID-19 tests. If you want to purchase at-home COVID-19 tests before insurance reimbursements end, you can do so at your local pharmacy or online.  

You can still order free at-home COVID-19 tests from the government until the end of the Public Health Emergency. See www.covid.gov/tests for more information. 

COVID-19 Treatment and Therapies: 
There is no change in coverage for COVID-19 treatment. If you are paying a deductible or cost share for these treatments now, then you will continue to pay these costs after the end of the Public Health Emergency. 

If you have any questions, please contact us on your MyChart app, through our website lchealth.org, or by calling 978.937.9700. 


Dr. Kumble Rajesh, Chief Medical Officer & Dr. Elizabeth Hale, Chief Operating Officer

Parking Alert For The Edward Early Garage (across from the Health Center)

UPDATE (4/14/23): Maintenance Work Now Expected To Last Through May 1st.

Notice from the City of Lowell: The second-floor left side parking spaces will be closed for maintenance from Friday April 7, 2023 until Friday April 14, 2023. Please use caution while driving on the right side as it will be utilized as both an entrance and exit during this period. Garage staff reminds us that the speed limit is 5 miles per hour in the garage. Anyone parking on the left side in the cordoned off maintenance area will be towed at their own expense.

April 5, 2023

Congresswoman Trahan Announces $2,769,246 in Federal Funding for Lowell Community Health Center

LOWELL, MA – Today, U.S. Congresswoman Lori Trahan (MA-03) joined representatives from Lowell Community Health Center (CHC), and MA Representative Vanna Howard to announce a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) grant to provide direct patient services to Afghan survivors of combat. The Services to Afghan Survivors Impacted by Combat (SASIC) program at Lowell CHC’s Metta Health Center will be receiving a three-year grant, totaling $2,769,246.  

Of the 24 organizations across the country to be awarded SASIC funding, the Metta Health Center at Lowell Community Health Center was the only New England site selected.   

“Lowell Community Health Center is a bedrock in our community, and I’m proud to be a longtime supporter of their work. They provide quality, culturally competent care to folks from all backgrounds in our diverse district, and there’s no better example of that than the Metta Health Center,” saidCongresswoman Lori Trahan. “I’m excited to see this federal funding go toward expanding the holistic work the Metta Health Center already does for families from all walks of life in the Third District. And I’m particularly glad to see our community come together to support Afghan refugees, just as we have in the past for refugees from all over the world.”  

“This funding will allow us to help Afghan survivors address and overcome severe, pervasive, and long-lasting combat-related trauma and facilitate their achievement of sustained physical, social, emotional, and economic goals and well-being. Lowell is a diverse and welcoming community, and this collaborative program allows us to support some of our city’s newest arrivals while continuing to build a just and healthy community,” said Susan West Levine, CEO of Lowell Community Health Center. “We are incredibly grateful to the Department of Health and Human Services, and to Congresswoman Trahan and MA Representative Howard for their strong support of Lowell Community Health Center.” 

The Services for Afghan Survivors Impacted by Combat (SASIC) program will provide coordinated care and services for up to 125 eligible Afghan survivors, delivering culturally tailored, integrated, trauma-informed, and evidence-based primary care and behavioral health care services; workforce-related, legal, community outreach, and other supports to promote well-being, self-sufficiency, and community engagement among the eligible Afghan population.   

“The individuals and families who will directly benefit from this dedicated funding have complex medical, mental health, legal, and social needs that require a comprehensive and holistic response,” said Dr. Robert P. Marlin, Chief of Metta Health Center. “Without the support and collaboration of the International Institute of New England, the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation Project, and Dr. Diya Kallivayalil, this work would not be possible.”  

The SASIC program is receiving HHS funding through the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).  

In November, Congresswoman Trahan announced $2,375,000 in HHS funding for Lowell CHC’s “Passage to Healing” program, which provides primary and secondary survivors of torture with treatment and resources such as culturally tailored and evidence-based screenings, primary and behavioral health care, and workforce-related and legal support. The project is designed to serve as many as 325 survivors of torture annually. 

About Lowell Community Health Center      

Founded in 1970, Lowell CHC serves as the “family doctor” for nearly half of Lowell’s population, seeking to “provide caring, quality, and culturally appropriate health services to the people of Greater Lowell, regardless of their financial status.” For information, visit www.lchealth.org or call 978.937.9700.