In a region of the country that historically has been left behind in most every facet of life, playing catch-up can be a slow proposition. But not in the case of the Leland Medical Clinic – a relatively new facility that is changing the healthcare landscape at breakneck speed.
In less than four years, since community leaders and the Delta Health Alliance (DHA) cut the ribbon on the renovated old city hospital, the clinic has added new services, programs, and equipment seemingly every week. Since May 2016, the clinic has:
• Undergone a $1.2 million renovation to offer quality healthcare to residents who might otherwise be forced to travel to see a doctor or nurse practitioner. The renovation was made possible by a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
• Installed a state-of-the-art, $75,000 x-ray machine, allowing patients to receive results in 15 minutes.
• Earned PCMC certified-diabetes program status.
• Opened the Universal Parenting Place (UPP) – a newly renovated wing of the clinic that provides free resources for parents and guardians to build on the emotional well-being of families. The facility was made possible through a $200,000 grant from the Memphis-based ACE Awareness Foundation.
• Implemented a host of new services for residents, such as the “Getting Healthy” program. Through the clinic, residents have access to a variety of lifestyle programs aimed at keeping residents active and healthier.
• Begun a much-needed mammography program with a nearly $200,000 mammography machine via a grant funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. More than 1,000 women over 40 now have access to breast cancer screening in their community. Through a partnership with Delta Cotton Belles, we are able to provide mammograms for women who cannot afford them at reduced costs.
• Hit the road with a new $320,000 mobile health clinic destined to make a profound difference in a region hindered by a lack of transportation and financial resources. The mobile clinic was funded through a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Lovia Davis, a Leland resident who received medical care at the old city hospital more than 40 years ago, said she no longer worries about her community not offering quality healthcare, especially after the closure of the Leland and Hollandale branches of the Mississippi State Department of Health.
“This is just such a blessing,” said Davis. “What a beautiful job. Our community can now feel more comfortable knowing they can get good service right here, without having to drive far away.”
The clinic is a Recognized Patient Centered Medical Home by the National Committee for Quality Assurance. The designation means that the entire clinic staff, as well as patients, work together as a team by focusing on all aspects of patients’ health using enhanced technology and chronic disease management.
The clinic treats thousands of patients each year with approximately a quarter of those having no health insurance. Twelve percent of patients have been diagnosed with diabetes while more than 21 percent receive care for high-blood pressure. Services provided by the clinic include management of acute and chronic illnesses, psychiatric care, wellness exams and checkups, immunizations, pediatric care, work-injury treatment, drug testing, pre-employment and school physicals, and nutritional services.
Before the clinic opened, Leland resident Dianne Burchfield worried for a time whether residents in her community would have access to even the most basic services.
“I’ve been here all my life, going to doctors in Leland, and I hoped I’d be able to keep doing that,” said Burchfield. “People outside of the Delta may not understand how important good healthcare can be when you’ve always had it. You can take it for granted. But not us. When the Delta Health Alliance stepped in to bring the old hospital back as a top-notch medical clinic, it was a real blessing.”