Texas Children's Hospital developed its Mobile Clinic Program in 2000 in response to the high rate of uninsured among Houston's children and the corresponding lag in immunization rates. The TCH Mobile Clinic Program continually determines service areas by:
Using this data, the Mobile Clinic Program initially identified 2 target areas, Houston's Gulfton area and Greater Hobby Airport neighborhoods. Through its two mobile clinics, the SuperKids Mobile Clinic and Ronald McDonald Care Mobile, the Mobile Clinic Program continues to provide care to uninsured and underinsured children mainly in these target areas year-round, serving primarily low-income Hispanic communities.
The Superkids Mobile Clinic was donated by the Junior League of Houston, Inc. and the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile Clinic was donated by the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Houston/Galveston. Funded by Texas Children’s Hospital with additional support through restricted grants, the Mobile Clinic Program collaborates with HISD and other public and private institutions to ensure the broadest possible reach.
Given the transient nature of many target families, the Mobile Clinic Program cares for children on site at their schools and provides referrals to nearby primary care clinics for convenient follow-up and consistency of care. The providers on the mobile clinics perform well-child exams, school and sports physicals, urgent/ill exams and provide immunizations. The staff also helps families gain access to public health insurance programs such as Medicaid, CHIP and the Harris County Hospital District Eligibility "Gold" Card. During the HISD summer vacation period, the Mobile Clinic Program participates in free immunization clinics across Houston and surrounding areas to help families prepare their children for the new school year.
Baylor College of Medicine medical students and pediatric residents work on the mobile clinics daily learning how to care for the underserved. The physicians on the mobile clinics are also involved in a variety of research projects that include caring for the underserved, community health worker research, complementary and integrative medicine research, community vaccine research and refugee health.
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