By Tedarius Abrams, Sharon Washington and Elae Hill, Washington Informer

As part of its transformation to better meet the needs of District residents, Providence Health System will soon offer urgent care services. The Providence Urgent Care Center will open on Tuesday, July 9, on the current campus of Providence and will operate seven days a week, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends. The Providence Urgent Care Center is the first ever urgent care center in Ward 5.

Providence Health System recently received certificate of need (CON) approval from the District’s State Health Planning and Development Agency (SHPDA) to operate urgent care services on its campus.

The Urgent Care Center will provide treatment for a wide range of common, non-emergency illnesses. These services range from treating those suffering from the flu, strep throat, or asthma, to the treatment of sprains, strains, and broken bones, along with offering vaccinations, radiology and other lab services.

“Providence will continue to work toward meeting patient needs and addressing the social factors that influence a person’s health,” said Tamarah Duperval-Brownlee, MD, MPH, MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer of

Providence Health System and Chief Community Impact Officer for Ascension. “We look forward to serving our community by offering another way to access convenient, immediate medical care.”

The Urgent Care Center is just one part of Providence’s strategy to address unmet health needs of local residents through its healthy village vision to create a community of healthcare and non-healthcare partners supporting the whole person and their well-being.

Still, many Washingtonians expressed reservations over what they termed the continued “displacement of natives” through an elimination of necessary services – including reasonably priced housing, late-hour public transportation, and full-capacity hospitals and emergency rooms.

“Elected officials believe that with the change in demographics they no longer need emergency services and full-service or full-capacity hospitals and emergency rooms,” Ward 5 resident Mel Prentiss told the Informer. “The reality is that as the nation’s capital, D.C. holds the ominous position of being the target for all types of terror events. Should something catastrophic happen here, how would the city and its officials handle the medical fallout? Moving to preventative services and ‘urgent care’ facilities, does not meet those potential needs.”

A 2016 District of Columbia Community Health Needs Assessment found that 23.8 percent of adults did not have an identified primary care provider. It also found that 10 percent of District residents reported delays in getting medical care because they could not get a timely appointment. Providing urgent care services will help address these specific issues.
“Each ward should have basic needs and services readily available. Even though I do not like the mayor shuttering Providence Hospital as it was originally designed, I do believe that an urgent care facility in Ward 5 could work well,” Shanice Graven said. “The question is will this serve any real purpose that a Minute Clinic or other urgent care center could not. How will it impact our communities, long term? We will have to wait and see, so I will hold off on rash judgements until I see the proof of its benefit.”

Providence continues to operate primary care services, skilled nursing care at Carroll Manor, outpatient behavioral health, care coordination for Medicaid beneficiaries through the My Health GPS program, and a retail pharmacy with access to free medications to those who need it most.

To learn more about Providence’s transformation, go to ProvidenceHealthyVillage.org.

Why I Chose to Be a Mentor for the “Discover the Unexpected” Program

This program gives students and recent graduates the opportunity to put what they have learned to work in real time at some of the most powerful press outlets in the nation. In a global economy where work experience is increasingly important, this program gives individuals who have matriculated through these prestigious universities not only a jump start on their careers, but it also invests in them as a network of untapped entrepreneurial talent.

Keeping Busy In The Chi

With my first two years completed at North Carolina A&T I have had on-campus experiences pertaining to writing news, interviewing and developing journalism skills. But I’ve never had the opportunity like the one Chevy Discover The Unexpected has given me this summer, to not only travel the country and develop genuine connections, but to also learn about our Black communities and the triumphs and downfalls that occur within them, that are rarely shared on a broader scale in the mainstream media.

Coast To Coast: L.A. To Chicago

After getting back to Chicago, my team and I prepared to attend ComplexCon, a convention hosted by a leading urban magazine. It is a leading convention in showcasing what’s trending in mainstream culture. It was a nice experience, but I realized that I’m not in touch with popular culture. From the fashion down to the hottest new artist(s), I feel like I’ve been living under a rock for the past few years. And you know what, I don’t care.

I Could Make Chicago a Thing

The Chicago Crusader has shown us a great time, and they have also been challenging me to do things that I am not naturally comfortable with. I’m actually a published journalist now, which is crazy because I am not a great writer, but it is still cool to say that some of my work has been published.

A Message to The Chevy DTU Fellows: Boot Camp Opening Remarks

Introducing Michelle Matthews-Alexander, Multicultural Marketing Manager at General Motors. Michelle has dedicated her career to enhancing major corporations’ relationship with diverse communities. Since joining GM in 2015, Michelle has not only advocated for, but helped spearhead Chevrolet’s Discover the Unexpected Journalism Fellowship program. In partnership with the National Newspaper Publishers Association, she and Chevrolet have invested in the future of Black Journalism while simultaneously supporting students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Now in its fourth year, the 2019 Chevrolet Discover The Unexpected program continues to provide opportunity to young journalists as they work to tell the stories that matter.

Hello Chicago!

With my first two years completed at North Carolina A&T I have had on-campus experiences pertaining to writing news, interviewing and developing journalism skills. But I’ve never had the opportunity like the one Chevy Discover The Unexpected has given me this summer, to not only travel the country and develop genuine connections, but to also learn about our Black communities and the triumphs and downfalls that occur within them, that are rarely shared on a broader scale in the mainstream media.

Hello Chicago!

Since the beginning of the journey I wanted the experience itself to be my “thank you” to the program coordinators. I treat each assignment, opportunity and encounter as a “thank you.” From delving into the depths of “The Green Book” and its comparison to our travel experience, to attending city press briefings I’ve learned that the way that we say “thank you” is through what we produce.

Hello Chicago!

Since starting with the Chevrolet Discover the Unexpected program, I have done many things I had not had the luxury of doing before. Driving the new Chevy Blazer that is part of the intern benefit, I have traveled and seen so much of the country I might never have seen. I have acted in commercials for Chevrolet and eaten crab cakes with celebrities DJ Envy and Fonzworth Bentley. It is just unbelievable how a year of hard work can take you places that you never dreamed of going.

Interns start at the Crusader

Tedarius Abrams, Sharon Joy Washington and Elae Hill are three young future journalists from HBCUs who started their internships with the Chicago Crusader on Monday, July 8. Blessed with a string of perfect summer weather, they have crisscrossed the city over the last three days, taking selfies at the Bean at Millennium Park and the Riverwalk, to marveling at the mansions of Obama, Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan and boxer Muhammad Ali.

Customers pick up final print edition of the Chicago Defender

Wednesday, July 10 marked the final print edition of the historic Chicago Defender. At some Walgreens stores in the city, customers stopped in just to buy the iconic newspaper for one last piece of nostalgia.

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