People’s Clinic to move and expand
July 21, 2009
As the People’s Health Clinic is seeing an increase in demands for its services, the move to a bigger facility couldn’t come at a better time.
The non-profit clinic, which provides health care for uninsured people in Summit and Wasatch Counties, will be moving from their 1,800-square-foot building on Kearns Blvd. to the new Summit County Public Health Center. Located near the Park City Medical Center and the USSA training facility, it will provide 5,000 square feet of space to the PHC. Services will begin being offered at the new location the first week of December.
With that much additional space, the clinic will be able to expand its services to the public as long as they can find more volunteers to donate their time.
"We can always use more volunteers," said Nann Worel, director of development for the PHC. She emphasized the need for physicians and mid-level providers like physician’s assistants and nurse practitioners. "With the new building, we’ll have an even greater need."
With a declining economy and increased unemployment, the PHC is seeing an increased demand for its services, especially from people with chronic illnesses like diabetes or hypertension who have lost their health insurance with their jobs.
"Right now we’re up 37 percent in patient visits over this time last year and with the new building we’ll have more capability," Worel said.
Recommended Stories For You
To encourage volunteers, the PHC has started the Take Two and Call Me in the Morning Campaign, which asks local physicians and mid-level providers to donate two hours a month to the clinic. This minimal amount of time, if given by all local physicians, would meet the increasing needs of the uninsured community.
Other ways the PHC is meeting increased needs is by offering new services. Last August they expanded their services to include a physical therapist, Krista Clark, who volunteers her time one evening a week during the winter and one evening every other week during the summer.
She owns her own practice in Midway, Wellsprings Physical Therapy, and is sharing her 25 years of experience in orthopedic manual physical therapy, a sub-specialty emphasizes hands-on treatment to determine the root of the pain.
"I decided to volunteer there because I think physical therapy is an important part of the health care system, and especially when cost-effectiveness is a prime consideration," Clark said.
Generally, in Utah, physical therapy is an entry point into the health care system, meaning it does not require a referral, and can prevent costs associated with test and prolonged medicine use. Physical therapy’s proactive approach often helps patients heal more quickly. At the PHC, patients generally see a physician before seeing Clark, who deals with "sprains and strains," that include a lot of back, neck and knee injuries. Patients require services for anything from ski and snowboard injuries to joints that are "irritated from repetitive stress in life," Clark said. "Then I teach them exercises and I teach them body mechanics and how to care for themselves [in order to] stay healthier."
The PHC is also bringing in two local acupuncturists, Melissa and Wyatt Krajewski, who own the local Longevity Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. The Krajewskis started volunteering their time last week, but, according to their website, are furthering their acupuncture studies in Japan until early August.
Worel said while the clinic’s greatest need is for physicians, they welcome licensed volunteers with any specialty who are willing to donate their time.
"They’re such wonderful people to work with; both the staff there and the patients," Clark said. "I think as a profession we need to be aware of giving back."
For more information on the People’s Health Clinic, visit them online at peopleshealthclinic.org or call 615-7822.