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Harris County Healthcare Alliance
Collaborating to create comprehensive healthcare

October 2014 E-Newsletter

Acute After-Hours Clinic in West Houston

Patients in Katy and West Houston who have limited access to health care will soon have new opportunities to receive acute care and, ultimately, to find a medical home. The Acute After-Hours Clinic project will expand walk-in hours for acute care services to include Monday through Thursday from 3 to 7 p.m. at Christ Clinic, 5504 1st St, Katy, TX 77493.
     The expanded hours are the result of a partnership of five medical facilities working together as part of a group called the Katy Collaborative. The project was initiated by Kara Hill, Executive Director, at Christ Clinic in Katy, a non-profit community clinic that serves the uninsured and those without governmental assistance. “It’s a privilege to work in the Katy community and see all the safety net providers come together and work collaboratively for those in need in our area,” said Hill. “We all share the same goal: for the right patients to be seen at the right place at the right time.” Continue reading.

Make it a Date!

Mark your calendars now, and join us for lunch on the First Friday of every month. We have the following topics scheduled:
Cultural Competency
November 7, 2014

Health Disparities
December 5, 2014

Legislative Advocacy
January 9, 2015
      The series will be held at the same time and location every month: 12:00  ̶  1:30 p.m. at San José Clinic, 2615 Fannin, Houston, TX 77002.
     Sponsorship opportunities are available. For more information, contact Stephen Collazo.
THE 2014 Performance Indicator Report is Hot Off the Press!
The Performance Indicator Report is produced by The Alliance annually to provide information on predetermined performance indicators about Houston and Harris County's community health centers. Essentially, it provides a "snapshot" for clinics to evaluate their progress against national, state, and local peers. It includes patient demographics, cost per medical encounter, overhead as a percentage of cost, health outcomes quality and much more. This newest version includes important revisions and updates, so take some time to explore the wealth of information here. Click to access the PDF here.
Kudos to Dr. Foxhall for Service on the TexHealth Board
Lewis Foxhall, M.D., was recently recognized for his service as chair of the TexHealth board since its inception in 2008. Dr. Foxhall, Alliance board member and Vice President of Health Policy at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, received recognition for his tireless, consistent and devoted effort to help implement the TexHealth program, on behalf of The Alliance. Incubated by The Alliance, the TexHealth Harris County 3-Share Plan offers affordable healthcare coverage designed for small business owners (2-50 employees) who previously were unable to provide coverage for their employees. Learn more.
Introducing Our Newest Member: VCare Clinics
VCare Clinics offer state-of-the-art medical centers servicing the greater Houston area with two convenient locations and a third location on the way in North Houston. They are doing business under the auspices of The Texas International Institute of Health Professions. Their mission is to provide Houston’s uninsured and under-insured families with affordable, comprehensive and compassionate access to medical care with same day service. Learn more.
Vecino Health Care Center Puts "Car Seat Safety" in the Limelight
Vecino Community Health Center is hosting this helpful learning event on "Car Seat Safety. " It will be held Thursday/Jueves, October/Octubre 09, 2014, 10 to 11 a.m. at 424 Hahlo St., Houston, Texas 77020. The presentation will be given by Elizabeth Peňa, Health Education Specialist at Texas Children’s Hospital. For more information, call 713-343-5509 or see more on Facebook.
Houston Area Community Services Annual Fall Fete
Houston Area Community Services (HACS) is holding a unique event for its fall fundraising event: a wine tasting hosted by Michael David Winer, which will include live music and hors d'oeuvres. It will be held Thursday, October 16, 6 - 9 p.m. at Kolanowski Studio. Learn more details and register now.
San Jose Clinic 4th Annual Fall Speaker Series
Dr. Pedro Jose Greer, Jr., is the featured speaker for the upcoming 4th Annual Fall Speaker Series in support of San Jose Clinic, to be held Thursday, October 23, 11:30 a.m. - 1 La Colombe d'Or. This year's theme is "Healthcare Crossroads: Influencing Policy & Social Responsibility." Dr. Greer is the author of Waking Up in America, recipient of the MacArthur Genius Fellowship, and Associate Dean for Community Engagement, Florida International University, School of Medicine. Also speaking will be Dr. Vivian Ho, Baker Institute Chair in Health Economics. Click for more information.
LHI Houston Holds First Fall Health Fair
Lesbian Health Initiative is beginning a new tradition with its First Annual Fall Health Fair held November 1, 2014, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., at 2150 West 18th St, Houston 77008, which is the location of LHI’s medical home partner, HACS (Houston Area Community Services). LHI is offering low-cost and a limited number of no-cost screenings for uninsured and under-insured clients who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT)-identified women and transgender men. Learn more and register here.
Spring Branch Ribbon Cutting
SBCHC hosted a ribbon cutting on Thursday, September 11, 2014, to celebrate the official opening of its West Houston Clinic at 19333 Clay Road Katy TX 77449. The event was well-attended by congressional representatives, business leaders, and members of the medical community. Located on Clay near Greenhouse, the clinic fills a much-needed gap in family medicine and pediatric services to under-served clients in the area. See more photos from the celebration.
EHF Launches its Strategic Plan
The Episcopal Health Foundation unveiled its strategic plan for transforming community health across the 57 counties of the Episcopal Diocese of Texas at a launch event held October 1, 2014, at Iglesia Episcopal San Mateo. Elena Marks, EHF president and CEO, offered an overview of the plan, which follows the theme of 1 vision, 3 goals and 7 strategies. She outlined the kinds of work EHF will undertake in the areas of grant-making, research and community impact. Learn more at
Walk for Mental Health Awareness
Join the fight to stop the stigma surrounding mental health by participating in the 2014 Walk for Mental Health Awareness-Houston, organized by a nonprofit organization that hosts three days of events, October 8 - 10, during National Mental Health Week. The Walk Houston works to help raise funds for 501(c)(3) agencies that provide mental health services to the those in the Greater Houston area. The 2014 Walk starts at Spotts Park – 401 South Heights Blvd. on Saturday, October 11 at 8 a.m. Register or learn more about participating in related events over the weekend.
Calling All Emergency Medicine Docs!
The Houston Fire Department’s ETHAN (Emergency Tele-Health and Navigation) Project is currently recruiting for Emergency Medicine Physicians to provide appropriate professional medical care, triage coordination, and consultation services to Houston Fire Department Emergency Medical Services staff in the field via audio/visual telemedicine links for participating patients. The salary is negotiable and the position is part time with 8-12 hour shifts. If interested, contact Dr. Michael Gonzalez for more information or apply directly.
Welcome to Our New Policy Advisor
The Alliance is pleased to introduce our new policy advisor, Tim Schauer. Many of you in Houston’s healthcare arena are familiar with Tim’s presence and influence in healthcare advocacy. Tim has more than 20 years of government relations experience in both Austin and Washington, DC. Over the last decade, Tim has advocated for a broad range of policy issues including healthcare, health insurance, public health, tort reform, education, and water financing. Tim also has served as COO for the Texas Health Care Council, a statewide advocacy group dedicated to focusing public attention on the uninsured challenges to the health care delivery system. During the 1990's, Tim sharpened his policy credentials as a Texas Legislative staffer to former Lt. Governor Bob Bullock, Senator Judith Zaffirini and Senator Chris Harris. We look forward to working with Tim as we advocate for change in this year’s crucial 2015 Texas Legislature.
Announcing Our 2014-15 Board Members
We are pleased to announce our new board for the upcoming 2014-15 term. Our new board chair is Stephen Williams, City of Houston Health and Human Services Department, and our new Secretary/Treasurer is Chris Born, Texas Children’s Health Plan. Beth Robertson, Cullen Trust for Healthcare, will continue as Vice Chair. George Masi, Harris Health System, is new to the board. Standing board members include Katy Caldwell, Legacy Community Health Services; Cathy Easter, Houston Methodist Global Health Care Services; Lewis Foxhall, M.D., The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center; Steven B. Schnee, Ph.D., MHMRA of Harris County; Umair A. Shah, M.D., M.P.H, Harris County Public Health & Environmental Services (HCPHES) and Harris County Local Health Authority; and Margaret Shannon, Alliance Chair 2013-2014. The Alliance greatly appreciates the support and service of our board. Learn more about them here.
Revisit the Workshop on Video: "Behavioral Health Screening in Primary Care Settings"
We appreciated the high turnout for our September 19th workshop, despite the stormy weather. The topic was "Behavioral Health Screening in Primary Care Settings: Integrated Health Care Models for Meeting Clients' Real-Time, Whole-Person Needs," featuring Dr. Stacy Ogbeide of Healthcare for the Homeless - Houston and co-hosted by the Mental Health America of Greater Houston, the Network of Behavioral Health Providers, and Greater Houston Behavioral Health Affordable Care Act Initiative (BHACA). A video recording is now available, along with resources related to this event, at
84th Texas Legislature Pre-Legislative Conference
Don't miss this important event on the theme of "Building a Stronger Community: Advocates for High Quality Health & Human Services." The keynote speaker will be Mr. Dale Craymer, President & Chief Spokesperson, Texas Taxpayers and Research Association (TTARA). Also speaking are Dr. Steve Murdock, Ph.D., Allyn R. and Gladys M. Cline Professor of Sociology, Rice University, as well as Mr. Phil Ritter, JD, MPA, Chief Operating Officer, Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute. It will be held Monday, October 20 at United Way. Link to the PDF for more details.
Demand for Health Care Exceeds Resources at TOMAGWA HealthCare Ministries
For 25 years, the staff at TOMAGWA HealthCare Ministries has ministered to the community in and around Tomball, Magnolia and Waller. The main clinic and its satellites have provided quality healthcare to area families that found themselves in difficult circumstances. Over the past quarter century, there have been struggles in meeting the needs of a continuously growing community, However the staff cannot recall any times as difficult as these. Because TOMAGWA is 100% community supported (that means no government or United Way funding), it depends on help. Read more.
Keep Us Posted!
Help us share your news with fellow members and our area's larger healthcare community! Email your updates and announcements to LaVonne Carlson. We look forward to hearing from you!
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