Examining efforts to provide healthcare to underserved communities

Posted at 5:53 PM, Oct 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-13 19:32:13-04

(WXYZ) — In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic access to healthcare is crucial.

So in tonight's 7 UpFront segment, we're taking a closer look at a community center that is providing care to underserved communities.

We're being joined by the CEO of the CHASS Center in Detroit Dr. Felix Valbuena to talk about it.

You can see the full interview in the video player above.

"The Community Health and Social Services Center, more commonly known as the CHASS Center, was created 51 years ago, now, as medical providers were leaving the southwest Detroit community and community hospitals were closing. The community saw a need for medical services and CHASS was started with a state grant that was given to the community in 1970, June of 1970 and now has grown to a full-fledged, federally qualified health center since 1993, providing comprehensive health and wellness services to approximately 12,000 individuals from the community and it's much more than just a medical facility. We have family physicians, family nurse practitioners, a nurse-midwife, and many other services, including dental services, an in-house pharmacy, integrated behavioral health services, we have a domestic violence project, nutrition education, we leverage community health workers, individuals in the community who support individuals between their visits with their medical provider to really, really focus on chronic disease, preventive care and things that are going to help them be the best version of themselves so they can be productive members of society, whether it be at school or at work," says Dr. Valbuena. "So definitely a center that is meeting not just medical needs but is focusing on the social determinants or social drivers of health to help the community move forward and in COVID times it's been complicated, but being the pillar of healthcare for the community we've been able to provide PCR testing, over 11,000 administered doses of COVID vaccine to help keep individuals safe and healthy."