Building on the success of our outreach program, Health Care Center for the Homeless, Inc. (HCCH) launched its first mobile medical unit in 2008. This 37-foot “clinic on wheels” features two exam rooms and a waiting area and is staffed by an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse and two Medical Assistants. Primary medical care services are provided throughout the tri-county area for persons experiencing homelessness by visiting our community partners with a similar focus. As many of our patients experiencing homelessness are more transient or lack regular transportation, this unit enables us to take our services to them.
Through funding from the American Re-Investment and Recovery Act (ARRA), HCCH acquired a mobile dental unit in late 2010. Equipped with three dental chairs, this unit takes oral health services to those in need. One of the main focuses for this unit is a partnership with local schools to help provide oral health care to underserved children in the community by delivering services on school campuses.
In the Spring of 2011, our mobile dental unit began its “sealant” program at schools in Osceola County with 50% or greater enrollment in the free or reduced lunch program. The sealant program protects the first four permanent molars against early decay and is currently directed at first and second graders. This service is provided free of charge to students with prior parental permission.
In 2009, HCCH received a second mobile unit through a generous in-kind gift from the Senior Resource Alliance and Florida Hospital. Initially used on a part-time basis, HCCH acquired funding to completely retrofit it to be a mobile dental unit due to a high demand for these services. It is out in the community helping to expand the activities of our original mobile dental unit.