Health care can be a difficult puzzle. We work as one to put the pieces
together for Chatham County and for you.

Who We Are

Chatham County Safety Net Planning Council is a county-wide planning body of key stakeholders, including providers, government representatives, advocates, funders, academics and consumers. Our goal is to strengthen the health care infrastructure for primary and behavioral health care and build capacity within our community’s safety net system, improving access to affordable care and the quality of that care for the uninsured and underinsured. Ultimately, we strive to improve health outcomes in Chatham County by working together on common problems.

Our Vision

The vision of the Planning Council is to create a resilient Chatham County through improved health outcomes by working together on common problems.

Our Mission

The mission of the Planning Council is to (1) develop an infrastructure to maximize access and utilization of health and behavioral health services, (2) implement effective population health and public health strategies through real collaboration, and (3) leverage available resources and create community-focused solutions to assure improved health status for our residents.

Our History

In 2004, the Chatham County Safety Net Planning (Planning Council) was created to assist the Chatham County Commission in better meeting the health care needs of uninsured and underinsured residents. Under the organizational leadership of the Chatham County Health Department, the group was asked to gain a better understanding of the health care needs of low income uninsured citizens in Chatham County, explore existing resources to meet their needs and to find opportunities to maximize the use of these resources.

Program development has been funded by Chatham County, National League of Cities, United Way, Healthcare Georgia Foundation, Georgia Department of Community Health, Southeast Georgia Cancer Alliance, Health Resources and Services Administration, Georgia Department of Behaviorial Health and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid and partner donations. This funding has helped support projects including the Campaign for Healthy Kids, Prevent Suicide Today, community Care Navigator program, expanded prescription assistance, a community-approach to adopting Electronic Health Records (EHR), building a county/regional Health Information Exchange (HIE), ad hoc street medicine clinics for the homeless and behavioral health work for children and youth. Today the Planning Council has grown to be a free-standing non-profit organization and a trusted leader in finding effective and efficient ways to address health care challenges in Chatham County.

What we do

Connect People to Health Insurance

Health Information Exchange (HIE)

Annual Evaluation: The Planning Council members share results. Once a year, all providers submit a set of data to the Evaluation Committee. The annual evaluation compares key metrics across previous years so we can document our progress, measure our successes, better understand new issues and challenges, and get an idea of what key areas that need to be addressed. Click here to view past Evaluations

Council Meetings: The partners and members meet every other month to improve the entire range of health care for the uninsured and underinsured. We believe that working together will lead to a better system of prevention, health education, care and treatment. To us, working together means communicating and sharing ideas to find better ways to provide health care to more people for less money. Click here to view upcoming meetings.


Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is made up of the following representatives:

  • Albert Grandy, CEO, Curtis V. Cooper Primary Health Care, Chair
  • Dr. Rena M. Douse, CEO, J.C. Lewis Primary Health Care Center, Vice Chair
  • Michael O’Neal, Executive Director, Parent University, Treasurer
  • Lydia McCrary, Deputy Chief, Chatham County Emergency Management System, Secretary
  • Ashley Allen, COO, Gateway Behavioral Health Services
  • Dr. Chris Rustin, Administrator, Chatham County Health Department
  • Lori Conaway, Assistant Chief Nursing Officer, Memorial Health University Medical Center

Our Staff