By Regina M. Mitchell, MHA, FACHE, President and Chief Executive Officer, New Horizon Family Health Services, Inc.
Next week, health centers across the country will observe National Health Center Week to recognize the vital role that our organizations play in providing health care access to our communities. As the nation’s largest primary care provider, health centers are the safety net for nearly 30 million people offering comprehensive primary care to individuals regardless of their insurance status.
New Horizon History
Established in 1992 with a small team of health professionals providing services to about 2,500 patients, New Horizon Family Health Services (NHFHS) now serves nearly 23,000 patients each year and operates medical offices in Greenville, Greer and Travelers Rest; a dental office in Greenville; two mobile medical units and a mobile dental unit.
NHFHS’ Health Care for the Homeless (HCH) Program provides primary medical, dental and behavioral health services and prescription medications to nearly 3,600 individuals experiencing homelessness in 13 Upstate counties each year.
In 2019, NHFHS and Miracle Hill Ministries partnered to open South Carolina’s first-ever in-shelter Medical Respite Care Program inside the Greenville Rescue Mission, an emergency shelter for men, to provide a safe place for those experiencing homelessness to rest, recover and receive medical support after discharge from the hospital. This year, the partnership was expanded to also serve women at Miracle Hill Ministries’ Shepherd’s Gate, a safe shelter for women and mothers with young children experiencing homelessness.
Our Ryan White Program provides primary and HIV specialty medical care, medical case management, prescription assistance, behavioral health counseling and HIV prevention services to over 1,200 individuals living with HIV/AIDS in 10 Upstate counties each year.
While our organization has grown over the years, our mission remains the same — to provide quality, affordable, compassionate patient-centered health care to improve the health of the communities we serve.
Our multi-disciplinary team of health care professionals includes physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, clinical counselors, nurse educators, outreach specialists, care advocates and pharmacists providing a broad array of primary and preventative care.
Using a community-oriented approach, NHFHS offers a comprehensive and integrated set of services to some of the most vulnerable in our community, reducing the need for more costly forms of care, such as hospitalizations and emergency department visits.
Patients can receive services including primary medical care, preventative care, dental care, health education, assistance with management of chronic medical conditions, behavioral health services, nutrition counseling and access to affordable prescriptions– all in one location.
More than 45% of our organization’s patients are uninsured. Many struggle with social, economic or environmental factors that create barriers to health care access. NHFHS’ Care Management Team helps patients overcome medical and non-medical issues adversely affecting their health such as lack of health insurance, transportation challenges, inadequate housing and food insecurity. Patients are connected with other community organizations for resources to enhance their health and well-being.
We often hear from patients that it is our team’s patient-centered and compassionate approach that makes a difference. Patients get better, feel better and live happier lives as a result of the care they receive.
National Health Center Week
Next week, as we recognize the role of health centers in improving the health of our communities, I encourage you to make your own health a priority. Below are 5 ways that you can celebrate National Health Center Week:
- Schedule Your Next Primary Care or Dental Appointment.
- Routine check-ups are important and can help detect health problems early when they may be easier to treat. Take the time to schedule your next primary care or dental appointment.
- Get Vaccinated or Boosted for COVID-19.
- NHFHS’ medical offices offer the Moderna vaccine and booster to all eligible individuals in our community Monday-Friday from 8 am – 3:30 pm — no appointment needed.
- Sign Up as a Health Center Advocate.
- Support the work of health centers by signing up as a Health Center Advocate at www.hcadvocacy.org/join and make your voice heard about important issues impacting health centers.
- Get Screened for HIV.
- NHFHS’ Ryan White Program team offers free HIV screening with no appointment at our 975 W. Faris Road office in Greenville Monday-Friday from 9 am – 4 pm.
- Subscribe to Our Newsletter.
- Sign up for our monthly newsletter and start getting the latest NHFHS news in your inbox.
To learn more about National Health Center Week and the work of NHFHS, visit our website at www.newhorizonfhs.org.