A new era in East Texas healthcare

By Philippe Djegal - email
Posted by Morgan Chesky - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - The medically uninsured, underserved and working poor of Smith County now have access to quality healthcare, thanks to today's grand opening of the Total Healthcare Center in Tyler - formerly known as Community Health Clinics of Northeast Texas.

The ribbon cutting marked the occasion.

Now, regardless of the patient's ability to pay, East Texans have access to quality primary and preventive healthcare in Smith County.

"We're one of very few that accept Medicaid," said Dr. Bennie Webster, Interim CEO of Total Healthcare Center. "So, we're soliciting all of the people that need to come in for Medicaid to come in."

Aside from the unveiling of the renovated facility, the center offered a free health fair, showcasing the services available at the new clinic such as: blood pressure, dental and diabetes screenings as well as mammograms and testing for HIV.

But, none of this would be possible without Smith County which donated the building to the clinic.

"I'm just excited to be out here," said JoAnn Hampton, a Smith County Commissioner. "Everything is under one roof. So, people don't have to run all over town. They can just come right to this location and get everything they need."

"People should feel like this is something special because, we serve everyone," said Dr. Webster. "We serve them with dignity and caring. "

Tyler Mayor Barbara Bass was on hand to celebrate the occasion.

"Total Healthcare Center is a tremendous facility," said Bass.

And, it's one of very few federally qualified health clinics in Smith County.

"It is a gift to our community to help make sure that everyone can have preventive care," said Bass.

"If they come here one year, they can comeback here two or three years later," said Dr. Webster. "We have all of their information and we follow them. So, we are treating the enitre patient."

The clinic is open to all Smith County residents as well as many surrounding counties. They are accepting CHIP, or Children's Health Insurance Program, Medicaid and Medicare patients. Payments for care are based on the federal poverty income level sliding fee scale.

The clinic is located at 928 North Glenwood Boulevard in Tyler. For more information, please visit their website: www.thctx.org, or call (903) 533-7400.

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