MCHD launches healthcare on wheels

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – While many of you are battling the flu and other illnesses, the Mobile County Health Department (MCHD) is trying to make it as easy as possible for you to get your flu shot and other services. In fact, he is taking his clinics to the community on wheels.

MCHD launched new mobile medical units in October. They say their goal is to reach more patients.

The units have everything you would see in your normal doctor’s office.

“With our Mobile Medical Units, we can provide all the services of our nine sites throughout the region. In all clinics you can expect the same service in our Mobile Medical Unit. We have a fully functioning laboratory, from visits of healthy children , sick visits, cancer screenings, we can do it all there in the mobile unit,” said Charity Gardner, MCHD health services administrator.

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Two smaller mobile units and one large bus are reaching people across the county, funded by federal grants.

Adrienne Irvin is a healthcare worker who operates a unit every day.

“He’s calm. He’s comfortable. He’s relaxed,” Irvin said. “I think it’s safer for patients to know they’re coming in and out than waiting in line at a busy clinic.”

Gardner says the ease of access is changing lives.

“That helps if we’re dealing with people who are homeless, patients who have issues with transportation, getting to schools, going to community centers like we’ve been doing this summer,” Gardner said.

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Unlike the big bus, the smaller units stop at Semmes and Mobile. Still, they are ready to be moved at any time.

MCHD says the larger bus is equipped with a full exam room and state-of-the-art technology.

“We can do vaccinations, blood draws and tests, just like you would in a clinic,” Gardner added.

Irvin says that while COVID remains a threat, they are also feeling the effects of the intense flu season.

“There’s been a lot of patients that come in and it turns out negative, and it turns out to be the flu or RSV,” Irvin explained.

Regardless of the disease, Gardner says they are poised to change the future of health care in the port city.

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“The team we’ve put together really has a heart for the Mobile County community and we’re really excited to get this unit up and running at full capacity, that’s what we’re all about. That’s why we’re here, that’s why we work for family health.” , Gardner said.

Gardner says MCHD would love to partner with organizations for its community outreach events. You can do this by calling 251-690-8823.

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