Central Health debuts mobile health clinic, set to deliver health care to underserved Travis County communities

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A new mobile health clinic this summer will begin providing primary health care services to areas of Travis County that Central Health has targeted as underserved.

The new mobile health clinic—a renovated 40-foot bus outfitted with exam rooms, a waiting room and basic health care lab equipment—was delivered to Central Health on May 3.

Larry Wallace, the chief administrative officer for Central Health Enterprise, said the clinic will likely begin offering services sometime in June.

“We’re really excited to see this unit finally arrive. It really helps us to immediately begin to provide services to some of those communities that we’ve been working with in Del Valle and Colony Park,” Wallace said.

According to Central Health, the mobile clinic will be parked in Creedmoor and Colony Park once full services launch this summer. While exact hours have not yet been ironed out, Wallace said the clinic will be open five days a week.

CommUnityCare, a regional partner of Central Health, will provide health care services for patients at the mobile clinic. CommUnityCare will offer primary care, preventive care, vaccines, lab services, chronic disease management and limited pharmacy services at the clinic, according to a Central Health press release.

“When you’re looking at the health problems you see in our communities, you’re seeing the same thing you see in the general population—hypertension, diabetes … and congestive heart failure,” Wallace said. “Even beyond that there’s the behavioral health component.”

According to Wallace, CommUnityCare physicians at the mobile clinic will be able to refer patients with behavioral health issues to IntegralCare, a Central Health partner.

The mobile clinic, purchased from Houston-based Christus Health System for $280,000, can fit up to four patients in the waiting room in addition to its exam rooms.

Wallace said he expects the clinic will likely staff three professionals, including a physician and technical support staff. Central Health and CommUnityCare will begin training staff on the mobile clinic soon.

Services from the clinic are expected to begin some time this summer, with a targeted date in the latter half of June, according to Wallace. Until then, Wallace said the health care district will likely take the bus out to Creedmoor and Colony Park before the full launch of services to familiarize the communities with the clinic.

“It would be a good gesture on our part to, even before we’re ready to launch services, take it out … and have our providers answer questions, so when we are ready to launch, we’re ready to roll,” Wallace said.

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Iain Oldman
Iain Oldman joined Community Impact Newspaper in 2017 after spending two years in Pittsburgh, Pa., where he covered Pittsburgh City Council. His byline has appeared in PublicSource, WESA-FM and Scranton-Times Tribune. Iain worked as the reporter for Community Impact Newspaper's flagship Round Rock/Pflugerville/Hutto edition and is now working as the reporter for Northwest Austin.
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