Care-A-Van works to serve uninsured community during pandemic
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - In a time when many families have faced job loss and personal health is front and center, a local health care group is adjusting practices to meet the needs of families at an unprecedented time.
For years, the Bon Secours Care-A-Van has served the area’s uninsured with basic health care needs. Slowly adding services to help the community.
“So, it’s a typical primary care practice," explained Tyler Agee Director of Community Development Bon Secours Community Health System. "We provide everything from your childhood immunizations to get your child ready for school to senior services and care for our senior adults. We have acute services. If you’re sick, you can come to us and receive acute care. And we also manage chronic disease.”
Most recently the team added a partnership with Urban Baby Beginnings to serve expectant and new mothers and babies.
“It’s very stressful when you don’t have support as a mom, especially a new mom," said Stephanie Spencer, Urban Baby Beginnings Executive Director. "And so what we tend to see is that when moms don’t have that support, the mom and the baby tend not to thrive very well.”
The system has always operated out of churches, counting on community buildings to serve the community’s most at risk.
Then when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it brought new challenges. In a mobile health care facility, the practice had to change how it operated, and quickly. As demands for social distancing grew, the organization transitioned to virtual appointments to meet the needs of area families. Community health concerns also grew as more families put off appointments, physicals and vaccines.
“This is a pandemic and we don’t need to get behind with the diseases that are preventable, especially with this time of COVID,” said Dr. Paula Young.
Care-A-Van has adapted to several virtual visits to help families. It has persisted in meeting community needs to administer childhood vaccines, flu shots and physicals for returning to school.
You can still book an appointment if you don’t have insurance, and this will come at no cost to your family. For more information on how to book an appointment, click here.
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