In an effort to better deliver health care to individuals without health insurance, Wake Forest Baptist Health and the School Health Alliance of Forsyth County (SHA) have partnered to create the Mobile Health Program, a new mobile clinic that will soon bring health care directly to underserved neighborhoods and schools in Forsyth County.
The mobile clinic is wheelchair accessible and features two private exam rooms and a counseling room. Uninsured adults and children can receive a wide range of services, including preventative care, treatment for minor illnesses, and management of chronic health conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and asthma.
The health care team is comprised of a nurse practitioner, a behavioral health specialist and a certified nursing assistant. Health education, nutrition coaching, lab services and referrals to specialists will be provided, if needed.
“The goal of the mobile clinic is to provide convenient and high-quality health care to underserved patients who may not be able to afford care or have the means to get to a doctor’s office,” said Rachel Zimmer, DNP, clinic director of Wake Forest Baptist’s Community Health Alliance. “We want to be able to prevent or treat health issues for those in our community before they potentially turn into costly health crises for them and get them connected to the most appropriate care for their needs.”
While the unit will visit various locations in Forsyth County – based on community input and data such as rates of chronic disease, poverty and food insecurity – the mobile clinic will serve people regardless of where they live. It also will make weekly scheduled visits to Cook Elementary School and Parkland and Carver High Schools in Winston-Salem, provided by the SHA.
“With the mobile clinic, we are hopeful that we can build trust and reduce barriers to care as we work with other community partners, like the SHA, in achieving healthy populations, one individual at a time,” said Richard Lord, MD, chair of family and community medicine and vice president of clinical operations, population health at Wake Forest Baptist.
The customized mobile clinic was designed and created by Spevco, a national manufacturer of specialty vehicles located in Pfafftown.