As October marks National Depression and Health Screening Month, a new community health care initiative is taking place with the launch of a mobile wellness clinic.

Working in tandem with ongoing community programs in precincts around Harris County, the mobile clinic will address the full wellness needs of each patient, including physical, mental and behavioral health.

Stanley Williams is the director of integrated health at The Harris Center for Mental Health and Intellectual and Development Disabilities.

He said while the program is partnering with community centers in precincts 1 and 2, it won’t be limited to just those two areas.

“We want to work with existing communities that are already doing activities, and we just want to add to that with our wellness hub approach. We’ll look at what they’re currently doing with their activities because they’re already connected to the community, and then we add the mobile wellness vehicles to go to these events,” Williams said.

The details

The Harris Center’s mobile wellness clinic will provide a range of services, including:

  • Preventive physicals
  • Emotional and physical wellness screens
  • Women’s wellness checks
  • Screenings for blood pressure, diabetes and obesity
  • Coordinated lab testing
  • Follow-up treatment for both physical and emotional health

The bottom line

The goal with the community wellness hubs, according to a news release, is to advance health equity and outcomes by eliminating barriers to ensure everyone can access essential emotional, health and social resources.

“At the events, we’ll do screenings for depression because we think there’s a correlation between high blood pressure, diabetes, as well as people may be depressed because of those chronic health conditions,” Williams said.

Each mobile clinic, he said, is equipped with a nurse practitioner who can assess both a mental health and overall health screening.

“We connect them with our clinics within The Harris Center. Sometimes our existing clients can’t get to our clinics for care, and so we’re using the precinct’s community center for a place where our existing clients may get care within our mobile wellness clinic,” he said.