Ascension - St. Vincent's Mobile Health Outreach

Founded in 1991, the Mobile Health Outreach Ministry (MHOM) at Ascension’s St. Vincent’s Healthcare in Northeast Florida provides access to quality health care for the most vulnerable in the communities it serves. Patients often lack insurance, money, and transportation; and may face language barriers in access to quality health care through traditional points of entry. With four mobile units, the fully staffed doctors-offices-on-wheels have worked to establish trusted relationships, delivering free health care services and preventative health education. MHOM also uses a vast network of partners for referrals and free follow up care.

Overview

Founded in 1991, the Mobile Health Outreach Ministry (MHOM) at Ascension’s St. Vincent’s Healthcare in Northeast Florida provides access to quality health care for the most vulnerable in the communities it serves. Patients often lack insurance, money, and transportation; and may face language barriers in access to quality health care through traditional points of entry. With four mobile units, the fully staffed doctors-offices-on-wheels have worked to establish trusted relationships, delivering free health care services and preventative health education. MHOM also uses a vast network of partners for referrals and free follow up care.

With the help of various partnerships in a five-county area, MHOM strategically targets three at-risk populations: those working on rural agricultural fields as well as the working poor and homeless adults and children within Northeast Florida’s urban core. The mobile units provide health care services to rural patients who cannot afford basic hygiene items, let alone diabetic medications and testing supplies. The program enables a continuum of contact with farm workers, regularly coordinating outreach services such as delivering food, clothing, medical supplies/medication and toiletry kits.

Urban patients connect through predictably scheduled locations, treating the Urban Outreach mobile units as a primary care office. Meanwhile, the Pediatric Outreach Ministry provides health care to children and adolescents on site at middle and high schools within Duval County. In addition to primary care services, immunizations and diabetic screenings, the program provides free school physicals, enabling children to engage in team sports. This supports outdoor physical activity that is found to be seriously lacking in many children’s daily routines by a recent St. Vincent’s Healthcare Community Health Needs Assessment.

Impact

Free adult and pediatric primary care, screenings and case referrals have benefitted 17,000 adult and pediatric patients; DTAP immunizations have been given to 2,000 pediatric patients; and influenza and pneumonia immunizations were given to 1,400 adult patients.

Lessons Learned

A large homeless camp was identified in rural Clay County, which lacks an operating homeless shelter in the area.

Future Goals

Having identified the need and created a strategic initiative, begin making twice monthly visits to Clay County to ensure an outreach to that vulnerable population.

Contact: Nick Ragone, Esq.
Senior Vice President/Chief Marketing and Communications Officer
Telephone: 314-733-8941
Email: nick.ragone@ascension.org

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