care-a-van, Hampton Roads, community health
Healthy Living

Bon Secours Care-A-Van Rolls On to Serve the Community

Jun 21 2024

Being uninsured should not be a barrier to receiving the care you need. That’s the motto of the Hampton Roads Care-A-Van team and has been for the last 22 years.

Bon Secours Hampton Roads Care-A-Van is primary care that provides free medical care to adults and children without health insurance.

“We are committed to the ministry’s Mission of helping improve the health and well-being of our communities,” Arnel Rodriguez, a nursing supervisor in Hampton Roads, explains. “Therefore, our goal has been to continue to find more people without health insurance and offer the services of the mobile health clinic.”

The clinic provides same-day appointments when available and treats chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension as well as preventive health and cancer screenings. Basically, it includes anything from wellness checks to lab work – it’s a primary care office on wheels.

It’s the commitment to our Mission that drives the mobile clinic staff. Staff like Leroy Turner, a driver for the clinic, Arnel explains.

“Leroy is one of our drivers, but he also registers patients, supports clinic operations and patient experience. He maintains the mechanical integrity of the vehicles and ensures the Care-A-Van meets mobile standards. It is just very important for all to know that we can’t have a clinic if the van is broken.”

In addition to driving the vans to multiple clinic sites, he volunteers to take the vehicles to community health events on weekends, being the first one to arrive and the last one to leave. He restocks supplies, ensures proper clinic set-up and performs other assignments as needed. His response when asked to help? “OK, no problem.”

In addition to traditional health care services, the Care-A-Van staff supports community health fairs by providing diabetes and hypertension screenings. A healthy food pantry is available in the Community Outreach Hub weekly in the Portsmouth office, but many people living in other areas in Hampton Roads need food assistance. Therefore, a healthy food pantry on the wheel was added to two clinic sites – namely, Norfolk and Hampton – to help people with food insecurity. The items in food baskets are carefully selected to help people with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes and hypertension. The plan is to expand the healthy food pantry to other Care-A-Van sites.

Learn about the community health services we offer at Bon Secours.

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