Oakland County Adding Healthcare, Mental Health and Dental Services
(Oakland County, Feb. 10, 2020)
Pontiac, MI – Oakland County Executive David Coulter announced a transformational expansion of health care and support services in Oakland County today that will be available to over 227,000 residents who are uninsured or underinsured. Oakland Health 360 is a strategic partnership of Oakland County Health Division, Honor Community Health, and Oakland Livingston Human Service Agency (OLHSA) that will enhance access to primary care, mental and behavioral health, family planning, and dental services, especially for women and children.
“Oakland Health 360 is a game changer for those who are uninsured or underinsured in Oakland County,” Coulter said at a news conference announcing the alliance today. “If you come in one of our doors to have your child immunized or receive a lead screening, I want you to be able to have a cancer or diabetes screening, talk to a mental health professional, get assistance with prescription drug costs, have a dental checkup and receive primary care.”
General primary care, family planning services, dental care, mental health, and community support services will soon be available at the North Oakland Health Center in Pontiac and the South Oakland Health Center in Southfield provided by Honor Community Health. When complete, this partnership will include mental and behavioral health services and a partnership with Oakland Livingston Human Service Agency to ensure residents have important supportive services, including access to insurance coverage, Head Start early childhood education and emergency services such as energy, food and housing assistance.
“We are incredibly grateful for the opportunity to serve as a major partner with a county that understands the need for us to work together for the betterment of our community,” said Debbie Brinson, CEO of Honor Community Health.
Coulter outlined some significant and unacceptable health disparities in Oakland County during the news conference. There is a 14 to 20-year difference in life expectancy based on where one lives in Oakland County.
For example, there are neighborhoods in Pontiac where the life expectancy is only 66. And in Southfield neighborhoods where life expectancy is only 72. Contrast these to a neighborhood in Troy – just 10 miles from Pontiac – where the average life expectancy is 86.
The partnership addresses many common barriers to healthcare residents may experience in two high-risk communities with limited access to medical and mental health services. In 2018, among residents living in seven cities, 37% lack access to sufficient primary care services and 39% of residents in these same areas lack access to adequate mental health services.
There are also a higher percentage of residents living in these areas who are uninsured compared to the overall county, and a significant portion who have not received key preventive services or dental care. These communities include Ferndale, Hazel Park, Lathrup Village, Madison Heights, Pontiac, Oak Park, a zip code in Troy and Southfield.
“Many of our clients face a complexity of issues when they must seek assistance at multiple locations and providers. Creating a one-stop-shop for these services, allows us to better address the full spectrum of needs we identified in these communities,” said Kathy Forzley, director of Oakland County Health and Human Services.
Oakland Health 360 will include integration of OLHSA’s, Welcome Center expertise that provides navigation services for a variety of programs including, MDHHS benefits assistance, health insurance navigation, utility assistance, home weatherization and emergency rent assistance.
“We will now be able to better connect our customers to the many helpful programs and resources that are available in a streamlined and more efficient way,” said Susan Harding, CEO of OLHSA.
Health Division are located at the following addresses:
North Oakland Health Center, 1200 N. Telegraph Road, Building 34 East, Pontiac
South Oakland Health Center, 27725 Greenfield Road, Southfield
Hours are 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Mondays and 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays.