February 25, 2020
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Aimed at improving the health of the community and eliminating health care barriers like transportation, The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center’s new Community Care Coach brings the doctor’s office to the place patients need it most – their neighborhoods.
The Community Care Coach is a state-of-the-art medical office on wheels, staffed by doctors, midwives and medical assistants who provide primary care, obstetrics and gynecology care, health screenings, immunizations and lab services. It features two exam rooms, a waiting room and a lab.
“In order to fulfill our mission to improve people’s lives, we must go beyond our four walls to tackle the social barriers that impact overall health,” said Dr. Harold Paz, executive vice president and chancellor for health affairs at The Ohio State University and chief executive officer of The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. “By changing the way we think about what people need to get and stay healthy, we can provide more care outside of the hospital, and deliver personalized health that reduces costs, makes care more convenient and truly improves the health of the communities we serve.”
According to an American Hospital Association report on the social determinants of health, 3.6 million people in the United States miss out on health care due to transportation issues. Lack of access to reliable transportation can delay health care, which leads to increased costs and poorer health outcomes.
“The Community Care Coach complements our efforts and the services we offer to build and support healthy communities,” said Dr. Nwando Olayiwola, chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine at The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. “By making the primary care visit more convenient, we can help patients stay healthy with screenings and immunizations, provide ongoing care for chronic medical conditions and decrease emergency room use that may not be needed with access to primary care.”
The coach will operate five days a week, mainly in Near East Columbus and at Moms2B locations. Primary care services will be available at the Ohio State African American and African Studies Community Extension Center and select Columbus Metropolitan Library branches. Women’s health services will be offered in Franklinton, Linden, North Columbus and Weinland Park.
“This will improve our efforts to offer prenatal care in areas with the highest rates of infant mortality to ensure that expecting mothers deliver healthy babies,” said Dr. Mark Landon, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. “We’ll also provide care for a broad range of women’s health concerns through every stage of life.”
Media Contact: Serena Smith, Wexner Medical Center Media Relations, 614-293-3737, Serena.Smith@osumc.edu