Houston-area health clinics offer many services
HOUSTON The need for affordable health insurance is so great that health care clinics in the Houston area are expanding their services. But it's not just for low-income folks; health care services at these clinics are for anyone who's uninsured. When Tracey Glover, a single mother of two, was looking for affordable health care for herself and her family, she turned to Legacy Community Health Services off Lyons Avenue near downtown. "It's provided counseling services for me and my son and medical care," Glover said. Legacy is a full-service community health center. "We have full adult primary care, pediatrics, pharmacy services, dental services, an eye clinic, physical therapy," said Eric Roland with Legacy. The clinic also provides mental health and nutrition counseling and treats patients who suffer from chronic illnesses. "This is for everyone and for those folks who don't have health insurance," said Dr. Mark Levine, who works at Legacy. What you pay at the clinic is based on your income and percent of poverty. The range for a primary care visit is $15 to $75. For example, a family of four that makes less than $22,050 would pay $15 for each patient visit. A family of four that makes between $39,500 and $44,000 would pay $75 per patient per visit. Over at the Good Neighbor Healthcare Clinic in the Heights, Janet Donath says "I think sometimes we're the best kept secret." Donath says the goal at the clinic is for patients to regularly see the same doctor for check up and wellness visits, and care there is not limited to just low-income patients. "We're for anyone that needs a clinic, that needs a physician," Donath said. Like the Legacy clinics, Good Neighbor charges on a sliding fee scale based on income. For those less than 100 percent of federal poverty, the fee for a primary care visit is $25. At the San Jose Clinic in midtown, doctor's visits here are free, but you must qualify. Doctors will see any uninsured patient who earns less than $22,000 a year or a family of four with an income of less than $44,100. At the Good Neighbor clinic and the Legacy, they do take insurance, Medicare and Medicaid. San Jose does not take any insurance.