CHARLESTON, W.Va.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–West Virginia Health Right today opened its CommUNITY Wellness Center at 515 Central Avenue on Charleston’s West Side. Thanks to funding from a $1 million investment from UniCare Health Plan of West Virginia (UniCare) to West Virginia Health Right, the new center features four behavioral health offices, health education and community training space, childcare so parents easily can attend health appointments, a teaching kitchen, and an onsite gym. The center will play a critically important role in increasing access to high-quality care for those in the community.
UniCare’s donation to West Virginia Health Right also will support at-risk individuals in communities with higher rates of HIV and Hepatitis C infection through local outreach, education and community-based services that aim to improve health equity. West Virginia Health Right and UniCare are strengthening and transforming how these services are provided with the launch of an innovative mobile medical unit that will provide access, care and quality for underserved populations, including routine primary care services and HIV and Hepatitis C testing.
“West Virginia Health Right is thrilled to partner with UniCare Health Plan on these new initiatives,” Angie Settle, West Virginia Health Right’s chief executive officer, said. “It will bring health care to those who need it most right where they are via mobile medical services on Charleston’s West Side and other areas of need. Through our testing, connection to recovery services, care and treatment provided on board, we will most certainly save lives using this innovative approach. The health care and learning hub will be a tremendous resource and safe place for our community members where they can receive information that will improve their overall quality of life.”
With UniCare funding, West Virginia Health Right also will provide outreach and education for local individuals through rapid Hep-C test kits, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP) medication, recovery program assistance and community-based services to promote and encourage a healthy and productive lifestyle.
“We are proud to support our friends at West Virginia Health Right to ensure that all West Virginians have access to critical health education, prevention and treatment opportunities, especially our most vulnerable neighbors,” Tadd Haynes, president of UniCare Health Plan of West Virginia, said. “At UniCare, we consistently seek out opportunities and collaborations that can help improve lives and communities, close gaps in care, and increase health equity across the Mountain State. As part of this ongoing commitment, we are pleased to support organizations like West Virginia Health Right, which are on the front lines of health care in areas where it’s needed most.”
The health education and community training space will serve as a learning hub to provide classes to underserved areas focusing on the social drivers of health to ensure the community has the tools and resources that support access to critical services for health living. These services include expanding access to emergency housing and workforce development programs that help individuals with transitions out of homelessness, as well as addressing food insecurity, physical and behavioral health, transportation assistance, employment support, education advancement and health care access. As much as 80 percent of a person’s health status is influenced by social drivers of health.
The wellness center has opened a little more than nine months after the opening of West Virginia Health Right’s West Side comprehensive care clinic at the Five Corners intersection.
About West Virginia Health Right:
West Virginia Health Right, the state’s oldest and largest free and charitable clinic, provides comprehensive medical, dental, pharmaceutical, behavioral health/substance use disorder care, vision, health education and mobile dental services to more than 41,000 impoverished uninsured and Medicaid/Medicare underinsured adults.
About UniCare Health Plan of West Virginia, Inc.:
UniCare Health Plan of West Virginia, Inc., serves more than 195,000 Medicaid and CHIP beneficiaries living in West Virginia. UniCare has served Medicaid beneficiaries in West Virginia since 2003 and WVCHIP members in 2021. For more information about UniCare, visit unicare.com/wv and follow the company on Facebook @UniCareWV and Twitter @UniCareWV.