Aunt Martha’s Health and Wellness to benefit from Red Hot Winter

ciLiving.TV

Danville, Ill. (WCIA)

Aunt Martha’s provides integrated health care, community wellness and child welfare services for close to 120,000 children and adults from over 600 communities across Illinois.

Our first health center in the Central Illinois region opened in Danville in 2004 and was a legacy of the work of local volunteers who had operated a free clinic in the basement of a local church for years before that.

Today, we have three locations in Danville:

  • Two community health centers
  • Our original site is at 614 N. Gilbert offers primary care, dental and mental health services.
  • Our newest location is at 800 N. Logan and is a collaboration with OSF Sacred Heart Medical Center
  • Our Center for Children’s Services is a name that’s familiar to a lot of people, and that’s the base of operations for most of our community wellness services in the area.
  • All three sites work closely to integrate the services they provide so that for our patients and clients it’s a seamless experience no matter where they are being served.

What’s most interesting is not necessarily WHAT we do, but HOW we do it.

When we say our services are integrated, that doesn’t mean they share an address. It means that our staff and providers are actively working together to engage patients, to understand the underlying causes of their physical and mental health conditions, then to make sure they get the care they need in a coordinated way.

In Danville, we offer primary care services, behavioral health (both psychiatry and therapy), tele-psychiatry, family planning, parent coaching, support for pregnant women, care coordination, and COVID-19 testing. Our model of integration means we also assist patients in supportive services such as finding transportation and housing if needs are identified. Consider us a one-stop-shop for all your healthcare needs in ways that are convenient and accessible, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Right now, most of the questions we receive are related to the COVID-19 vaccine. We’re more than happy to answer those questions and to help people work through whatever concerns they might have about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccines that are available.

In Central Illinois – Champaign and Vermilion Counties, specifically, the PANDEMIC is the problem we ALL need to work together to solve.

The simplest way to move beyond this difficult time is to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Do it for yourself. Do it for your family.

Specifically, to those who are people of color, and to the leaders of those communities, I say we need to do better.

African Americans and Latinos represent about 19% of the population of Champaign and Vermilion counties. They’ve accounted for 25% of the COVID cases, but so far African Americans and Latinos have been the recipients of less than 10% of the vaccine doses administered in those two counties.

We need to make this commitment to ourselves. If you are hesitant, I urge you to ask questions. Talk to you doctor. Understand that the science behind it is strong. Understand that the vaccine works and that it is absolutely safe.

To promote vaccine uptake, Aunt Martha’s created a video called “Protecting Each Other Together.” It’s for all audiences – those who are hesitant about taking the COVID-19 vaccine and those who would like to do more to encourage the people around them to get vaccinated.

The easy answer, and we’re proud to say it, is our vision of the value we can bring to the lives of the people we serve through our model of integrated care. We’re proud to have been one of the first community health centers to move to integrate our services. We were one of three health centers in the country invited by Columbia University to integrate primary care and mental health services. That’s something we’re proud of, but our model alone is nothing without people who are committed to making it work.

What TRULY differentiates Aunt Martha’s is the people who dedicate themselves to caring for the highest risk, most highly acute patients in their community.

Aunt Martha’s – to the credit of each and every one of our employees – has been on the frontline since the beginning of this pandemic. We’ve seen the toll that 12 months of loss and stress and uncertainty have taken on the people we serve. We’ve felt it ourselves.

That’s why I’m so proud of our employees, because they’ve stayed committed, they’ve stayed focused and they have lived Aunt Martha’s mission to respond to the needs of the people around them.

That could be the extra assistance we offer to patients who are unemployed for the first time, who’ve lost their health insurance coverage or are navigating the healthcare system as Medicaid consumers for the first time.

Or it could be the way our entire staff rallied to change how they care for patients. Our health center in Danville topped 1,000 telehealth patients for the first time last year.

I’m extremely proud of our employees for making that pivot on the fly. I think it says a great deal that almost 30% of our patients were immediately ready to take that step with us, and I think it is a great example of what makes Aunt Martha’s different from other organizations that might consider themselves our competitors.

We are very fortunate to join Red Hot Winter for a benefit concert and auction that will air on WCIA this Saturday, April 10 at 7pm as well as live streamed on WCIA’s website.
Aunt Martha’s services will be the beneficiary of this fun and energetic virtual event.

As I’ve said, I really believe that it’s individual people who differentiate Aunt Martha’s. That’s true about our employees, but it’s also true about the people in the community who support our work.

We’re grateful to Rod and the team that puts together the Red Hot Winter event, and we look forward to being part of it.

Aunt Martha’s Health and Wellness
(877) 692-8686 / (877) MY-AUNT-M
VERMILION AREA COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER
614 N. Gilbert St., Danville, IL 61832

VERMILION WEST COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER (NEW – at site of former Christie Clinic)
800 N. Logan Ave., Danville, IL 61832

CENTER FOR CHILDREN’S SERVICES
702 N. Logan Ave., Danville, IL 61832

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