Deaconess Foundation Launches new Mobile Health Check Unit
The state-of-the-art, mobile van will improve access to quality care in under-resourced communities by reaching residents directly where they work and live.
“The Mobile Deaconess Health Check, in collaboration with our partners, allows us to extend much-needed medical care throughout our city,” said Tony Woods, chairman of the Deaconess Foundation. Woods said all members of the community have access to the mobile van, but the outreach program has been designed to help individuals who don’t have the resources, time, or the ability to travel to traditional medical care sites.
“Access to comprehensive, quality health care is critical for maintaining health, preventing and managing disease, reducing unnecessary disability, and achieving health equity in our community.
Partner organizations include CityLink Center; The Public Library of Cincinnati (downtown) in collaboration with Maslow’s Army; the Salvation Army (Norwood); St. Vincent de Paul (downtown); Northstar Community Church (Loveland); Whitewater Crossing Christian Church (Cleves); and treatment centers for women.
Diane Decker, director of development at Deaconess Foundation, said that members of the community can receive preventative health screenings, vaccinations and immunizations, physicals, treatment for acute illness and injury, and mental health evaluation. The medical staff on the van also provides support for chronic diseases such as asthma, hypertension, diabetes, and heart disease, among other services. Individuals can receive day-of care with or without an appointment.
Medicaid, Medicare, and commercial health insurance are accepted, and individuals receive treatment regardless of their ability to pay, said Decker. “This kind of convenient, but still private care allows us to advance our ability to deliver healthcare solutions where it is needed most in our community. Our community’s diverse needs continue to evolve, and this helps us deliver care that meets these needs,” said Decker.
Staffed by a team of healthcare providers including a medical director, nurse practitioners and medical assistants, the 41-foot van is equipped with two exam rooms, EKG and ultrasound, a practitioner’s workstation, a space for lab draws, and a restroom for health screenings.
Heidee Friestuhler, practice manager for the mobile van, sees first-hand how the initiative is helping to address the psychological, social, and physical needs of individuals.
Friestuhler shared how recently, a mother brought in her five-year-old, diabetic and insulin-dependent child. As a working mother without health insurance, she had previously received a month’s supply of medication for her son, but she was unable to continue to afford it.
“The Mobile Health Check is making a major impact with those who are under served by overcoming some of the traditional barriers they may face in getting medical care,” said Friestuhler.
For more information about the Deaconess Mobile Health Check’s schedule or for partnership opportunities, visit https://deaconess-healthcare.com/mobile-health-van-schedule/ or contact Decker at (513) 559-2652.