PRESTONSBURG – Officials with Mountain Comprehensive Care Center are hoping its recently expanded Homeplace Clinic will improve medical health in a population that ranks among the most unhealthy in the nation.
Community leaders from around the county gathered at the Homeplace Clinic, located on Front Street in Prestonsburg Tuesday for an open house and to learn more about the facility that aims to offer comprehensive affordable healthcare. According to organizational literature, the mission of the facility is “to improve the overall health of the under-served and homeless population of Eastern Kentucky by providing access to quality primary health care.”
The project is designed to target the extremely low income population (150% of the Federal Poverty Level and below) in Floyd County. According to American Health Rankings, Floyd County ranks 111th out of 120 counties in the state of Kentucky that ranks 48th out of 50 states, making it disproportionately affected by health disparities.
Director of the Homeplace Clinic, Susan Daniels, says that while the aim of the facility is to provide healthcare to the indigent, it has a much broader range.
“We can help the indigent. But homelessness isn’t just people living under a bridge. There is an ‘At-Risk’ group of people in this region in shelters and halfway homes,” says Daniels.
Daniels also notes that while indigent care is the primary purpose, anyone can be seen.
The clinic is set up to offer a wide array of services ranging from primary and preventative care, to chronic disease management and lab services. The clinic will also offer dental and vision referral services.
According to Daniels the new facility is funded through grants made available primarily through the passage of the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), specifically HRSA grant funding.
MCCC applied to HRSA, Health Resources and Services Administration, siting numerous health issues in the region noting, “the targeted homeless population experiences a host of health disparities that include but are not limited to: high prevalence rates for diabetes, high blood pressure, cigarette use, obesity, asthma, major depressive disorders, substance use, and other chronic conditions.”
According to figures from HRSA, since 2012, MCCC has received over $3.5 million in grants from HRSA for primary health care, specifically funding the Prestonsburg Homeplace Clinic.
The Prestonsburg Homeplace Clinic is open Monday – Friday 8:00 a.m. -4:30p.m. For more information about the clinic and its services the center can be contacted at (606) 886-4346 or by visiting the MCCC website at www.mtcomp.org.
Jackson Latta can be reached at (606) 886-8506.