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Spectrum Health to open Community Medicine Clinic for uninsured, underinsured

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Spectrum Health Medical Group's new clinic will open Monday, August 5 with access to primary as well as mental care for those who wouldn't otherwise have access to proper medical attention.
Ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Community Medicine Clinic open house

/Ana Olvera

Ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Community Medicine Clinic open house


 /Ana Olvera

Grand Rapids Commissioner Kelly and Spectrum's Senior Vice President of Community Relations Steve Heacock talk with Eric Bouwens

Grand Rapids Commissioner Kelly and Spectrum's Senior Vice President of Community Relations Steve Heacock talk with Eric Bouwens /Ana Olvera

Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported

Spectrum Health Medical Group held an open house Friday morning for its new Community Medicine Clinic (CMC) opening Monday, August 5. The clinic, located at 75 Sheldon Boulevard SE, will offer primary care to uninsured or underinsured Grand Rapids residents.

"There are many people who don’t have insurance, or don’t have documents or who have some other barrier - language, lack of resources... and so we’re trying to begin to fill that gap," says Eric Bouwens, MD, lead physician at CMC. 

Bouwens worked in migrant health services in Sparta before working in Kentwood as a family physician for the last 20 years. 

The family-medicine clinic will be appointment-based but aims to avoid long wait times for available appointments.

"We’re establishing new relationships with people and once we're established, then we have same day appointments so that if a person is sick or having a problem, they should be able to call and be seen within 24 hours," says Bouwens.

CMC will function using person-centered health care. Bouwen's team has committed itself to a "central concept to see each person that we see, not as a patient, but as a person- and to take steps to understand each person's unique reality first before offering solutions and treatment options," says Bouwens.

CMC will have a bilingual and bicultural staff, says Bouwens. Staff will also include a social worker and mental health care provider to integrate counseling and social work intervention into CMC's medical care. 

"Most people who have a serious illness do experience emotional distress over that illness. Or most people who have a mental health illness, it often affects their physical health," says Bouwens. "In reality, they're not separate. It's just recognizing that it doesn't really help anybody to say 'oh thats not in our field, go down the street.'”

A second physician, three physician’s assistants, and a second mental care provider will be added to staff throughout the following months.

Other CMC features include a pharmacy, medication reviews and care coordinators that will connect patients with other services in the community. The clinic will also work closely with a pain and substance abuse specialty clinic in the building. 

"All of these [features] are going to help drive three things: number one, it will be able to promote greater access to care in an urban environment. I think we’ll be able to create greater quality outcomes for patients utilizing these services and I think patients will be able to really have a much improved sense of what their full patient experience is all about," says Kenneth Fawcett, Jr., MD, Spectrum Health Medical Group Interim President. "Ultimately those three things are the things that I think are most important."


Ana Olvera

I've spent the past four years as a part-time Hoosier, part-time Michigander while attending Ball State University. Now that I'm done with college, I'm happy to be back in Grand Rapids to continue experiencing the awesome things our lovely city has to offer.

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Comments

I hope Spectrum Health Medical Group's new clinic will provide advanced and beneficial care service to the victims in their regions. With the help of these activities we have found a complete beneficial care service environment. So apart from Spectrum Health Medical Group's new clinic we have found other medical care clinics near us in different regions. Those are quite eligible to provide beneficial medical care and helpful service to the victims.

In order to develop the current health care system of the country; we have found different types of protocols and systems are applied in various regions. Here also we have found that Spectrum Health Medical Group works to establish better relationship with people through their better health care systems. And I hope these steps are help to increase the current health care and medical care system in different medical and urgent care centers.

Is there any dental care available on the clinic grounds? I'm sure many uninsured people would be grateful for a free check-up. Personally I prefer the No Fear dentist, but not everyone is lucky enough to have on nearby.

This is amazing. This is such a good thing to be done for the community. Not many people have the means to treat themselves and this is an opportunity that can't be ignored. My mom is a Dentist in Pearl River NY and she did something similar as a project.

We have Eric Bouwens and his colleagues as our primary health care team, we found the professional and caring attitude both displayed to be more personal ,click here for an example, and more genuine than any of the literally dozens of primary care providers we engaged over our 60+ year lives as my work required frequent world-wide moves. They were consistently prompt keeping appointments, calm , reassuring and and above all, competent, in all our interactions. 

I went to the Ophthalmologist yesterday due to recent poor vision issue. In the past taking off my glasses improved my vision especially with very small fonts but this weekend I could not read anything with glasses on or off, not even the large fonts on http://www.x-raywizards.com/. Turns out that my right eye is suddenly a lot different than the last time I had an exam. He said all I need is new spectacles.

Very wonderful clinic and congratulations to Dr.Eric Bouwens.  I found his services while surfing www.gregganskemd.com/.He loves kids. Explains everything to the parent and child to make both feel at ease. Very gentle and kind. I wish I could find an adult doctor like him!

Its my intent to show appreciation for the hard working staff of Spectrum Health Medical Group and of Berlin MD Hostipal in recognition for their efforts - from the front desk to the nurses station. I have always been given a professional approach followed by outstanding efforts that seemlessly look after the patients needs. 

I am amazed of the level of professionalism in the latest medical services institutions that have been inaugurated in the area. It seems that, finally, this field is making a difference in the service providing area and the private sectors has finally opened up to innovation and technology. I bet http://www.uniformstoyou.com/healthcare.aspx even made an entrance here, judging by how neat and professional everything looks around here. They deserve our most sincere congratulations!

It is an amazing thing to be able to assist the uninsured and the underinsured. It proves dedication toward the work you are performing, enough to invest resources and funds in such a noble cause. While I was speaking to my specialist yesterday, at Dental Elegance at the Islands, it came across my mind that maybe I could donate some money for a good cause like this, too.

This is a sign of new hope, how I wish this innovative idea can expand their services in many areas where health management services is hardly at reach, and it must be the government initiative. Thanks to private and NGO organizations that mostly make things like these possible. The idea seems to be one like at http://www.interactivecare.ca/, they promote health care possible for people with interactive and comprehensive innovation.

There comes the day when there are visibly more facilities and less burden for the uninsured rather than the insured. Once you manage to see the Risk Point, it is fairly easier to make the right decisions from there on. Better said, the safest decisions you could make, since, of course, health is priceless to everyone. 

This is an amazing idea and hopefully, it will serve a lot of people. Maybe after this, they will all have some sort of payment and performance bond counseling and more and more people will have everything covered. Life gets easier that way.

Just read a few articles on women's health and there are so many STD's and women's diseases it is unbelievable. A Vaginismus MD will have a mojor benefic impact on these women who can't afford a consultantion. 

Furthermore, there are a lot of subjects to be opened to discussion, but until then, everyone should just go for a quick check-up, either from RapidTest.com or any other form of consultation. Just be healthy for yourself and then help others be healthy!

There are some little problems gone horribly wrong, because most people that are uninsured don't take small things, like a deep cut because they didn't use safety razors, and the wounds are not treated properly. So, again, this is a new start for the health system.