Mobile Medical Clinic Partners with Metropolitan Ministries
TAMPA, Fla. (June 18, 2018) – St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital, part of BayCare Health System, and Metropolitan Ministries are joining forces to improve access to care for some of Tampa Bay’s most vulnerable families. St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital’s Mobile Medical Clinic now provides a full range of pediatric services at the Tampa campus of Metropolitan Ministries.
The 40-foot bus is on site one day per week with a dedicated health care team consisting of a board-certified nurse practitioner, a registered nurse, a licensed practical nurse and a health educator. Services provided on the clinic-on-wheels include treatment of minor illnesses, well child exams, hearing and vision screenings, immunizations and health education. All services are provided at no cost to families, and children must have Medicaid or no insurance to qualify.
“Since starting our Mobile Medical Clinic program 14 years ago, our mission has been to reduce barriers to care by bringing high quality health services to underserved areas in the community,” said Jimmy Baumgartner, director of research and children’s wellness and safety at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital. “This partnership represents an expansion for the Mobile Medical Clinic as it is the first location where we are able to offer acute care capabilities in addition to well child services.”
The partnership also increases the level of medical care available to children at Metropolitan Ministries compared to previous efforts and creates opportunities for future growth of health programming throughout the organization.
Children living in poverty experience higher rates of acute and chronic disease, developmental and psychological issues, and overall poor health outcomes. Housing insecurity compounds those risk factors, creating a perfect storm of disadvantage.
“The medical care that the children and families receive on the Mobile Medical Clinic is incredibly important,” said Christine Long, Metropolitan Ministries’ Chief Programs Officer. “Some families may have gone years without having a well-check or critical medical attention. The services offered on the mobile clinic could be life-changing in many cases. This partnership is critical to achieving our mission to offer comprehensive care to the families who come to our campus.”
This is one of BayCare’s many efforts to improve the health of the entire community through outreach programs and a commitment to the ideal that everyone deserves high quality care, regardless of their ability to pay. In 2017, BayCare contributed a total of $391 million in charity care, Medicaid and other income-based programs, and other community services such as the Mobile Medical Clinic.