Spotlight on the Erie Evanston/Skokie Health Center
BY KIMBERLY ELSHAM VAVRICK For Sun-Times Media
The Erie Family Health Center in Evanston was the first location outside of Chicago. Tiosha Goss, director of Health Center Operations at the Evanston/Skokie location, provided an update on the center’s recent relocation to 1285 Hartrey Ave.
1. What updates do you have about Erie Evanston/Skokie Health Center?
We recently launched on-site behavioral health services for pediatric patients — made possible with our partnership with C4 (Community Counseling Centers of Chicago). Additionally, earlier this year, we hired an additional full-time health educator to provide crucial one on one patient education around important health focuses such as diabetes, nutrition, etc. She also provides support for our prenatal program and will host group education programming for our families. For FY14, we have hosted over 5,800 medical visits, serving 2,781 unduplicated users.
2. How does Erie Evanston/Skokie Health Center influence community health?
We ensure that our patients receive high quality and accessible care. This includes being a medical home for patients where they can receive wraparound services to support clinical care such as behavioral health, benefits enrollment, case management and health education. Many of our patients had been without care for years and were struggling with acute and chronic conditions. Erie met their immediate needs, serves as their medical home and refers them to hospital partners for specialty care.
3. Why is it important and unique in the community?
Erie is the first Federally Qualified Health Center in the Evanston/Skokie communities, bringing accessible and high quality services to those most in need. We serve as a medical home to our patients, serving the whole family with critical clinical care. Additionally, our hospital partnerships — such as one with NorthShore University HealthSystem — also make it possible for our patients to have access to needed auxiliary services such as specialty care and diagnostic/screening services.
3. What’s something surprising about the center that people may not realize?
We serve patients regardless of their ability to pay or immigration status, in a time where health services are costly and accessing to quality care is challenging. We are happy to say that we are a resource for those in need. We offer a sliding fee scale for patients and provide benefits screening and enrollment support.