Agency Update – June 2022
June 30, 2022 – Columbia, Missouri
THE TIMES, THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’
If there is ever a constant at Spectrum Health Care, it is change. Change is a necessary force that keeps us true to our mission in addressing health disparities and inequalities, to achieve optimal health outcomes for marginalized individuals and families in our communities.
Our MISSION is to address health disparities and inequalities, to achieve optimal health outcomes for marginalized individuals and families through provision of comprehensive health education, counseling and testing, housing support, and high-quality health care.
As we begin our 30th year, SHC has entered yet another season of change to better streamline our operations and consolidate the workplace to ensure we maximize every dollar provided in good faith by the agency. Every pivot the agency makes will set off a tidal wave of process change – and we are ready!
CHANGES TO PRIMARY CARE SERVICES
Being everything to everyone, medically speaking, is a huge undertaking. In 2017, when the SHC clinic was put in service, we envisioned being the care provider for those who could not afford, maintain, or find healthcare that supported them and their health goals. Over the last six years, we have learned a lot, and the primary take-away is: we need to focus our support on the populations with specialized health needs.
Over the clinic’s initial six years, it operated as a primary care clinic, drawing in patients that are supported in our mission and vision. Then in 2020, COVID-19 altered the world and opened a learning opportunity. We learned that our patients were not solely primary care, but rather in niche areas of care. It became more and more clear that we needed to shift the care model to support those patients and their unique healthcare needs.
SHC has always been niche; we work to help those who have limited or no access to health solutions. We are making the commitment to redouble our efforts to provide services to HIV+ persons, Women/FAAB, the LGBTQ+ community, family planning and sexual health, and those populations who find themselves unable to connect with or locate supportive providers. While SHC is not taking new Primary Care patients, depending on referral source, no current patient will be referred to other Primary Care providers.
For almost 18 years, SHC has occupied a 5,000+ sq. ft. office suite (#250), it currently houses our housing program staff, Community Health Workers staff, and the administration offices. Historically, this was the hub for 20+ case management staff and services. Due to the pandemic, our service delivery model has changed. More of our staff work remotely and others who require a meeting or on-site space will move to Suite 100. As we add new programs, we will focus on locating staff within our region, working remotely, and closer to the people they serve. Implementation of this strategy during the pandemic has proven this model gets better results, rather than forcing clients to come to a central location. The reality is… not many will notice this change, but we felt this change was important to share with our community.
POSTPONEMENT OF ANNUAL ACES UP CHARITY POKER TOURNAMENT
We realize we are not yet out of the grip of the COVID pandemic. Our staff members, families, and friends are still contracting this virus. Our staff has done everything possible to prevent getting COVID — they have all been vaccinated, boosted, wear masks, have limited travel, and even limited the time spent in close proximity with the patient; and still, over 54% of the staff got COVID. As a health agency, we cannot, in good conscience, put people at risk of contracting any disease, even COVID. We discussed mandating proof of vaccination or requiring masks. Those choices put our staff and volunteers in a position to police our guests, which is not fun. Our mission is to ensure people are healthy; therefore, we cannot promote or create events that put people at risk. Be sure to watch our social media for updated dates and details as we are hopeful to be back on our annual April schedule with this event.
COME GATHER ‘ROUND PEOPLE
While changes are necessary for growth and refocusing on services needed, Spectrum Health Care is here, and will continue to be. We will support our programs that help so many and work to create new solutions that increase health for our communities. Thru all our changes over our 30 years there has always been and always will be a constant, our commitment to the people and communities we serve. No matter how we change, know that you are at the center of everything we do and will continue to do – that is our promise today AND tomorrow!
Keep on top of all things Spectrum, including hours of availability, special services and events, volunteer and donation/sponsorship opportunities, and of course, information and details of all things going on with the agency and our supporters/funders, by subscribing to our mailing list and following us on social media. All links are found on our Linktree: https://linktr.ee/shc_mo