Grants for mobile health clinics provide the required funding for the growth and expansion of medical care facilities. The grants ensure that the clinics are incorporated with emergency preparedness and healthcare infrastructure.
The management models at the time of COVID-19 are an excellent example of this situation. The grants were received by mobile health clinics to increase the capacity for treating sufferers in isolation facilities.
The enhanced federal reimbursement models helped in strengthening public health and care systems for future outbreaks.
Grants for Mobile Health Clinics – Need of the Hour?
Grants for mobile health clinics can promote value-based care, better healthcare outcomes and improve patient access to care.
Patients living in medical deserts suffer from inadequate access to health services. Mobile health clinics represent an essential component of the healthcare system, serving vulnerable populations by preventing and managing chronic diseases, promoting high-quality care and treatment to illnesses at low cost.
What is Mobile Health Clinic?
A mobile health clinic is a doctor’s office or exam room located inside a bus, a large van, or RV. These clinics belong to health systems. They travel to the medical deserts to connect with the unreachable patient populations.
Why is there a Rising Demand for Mobile Health Clinic?
The patients reported numerous barriers to accessing care that increased the demand for mobile health clinics.
Trust and Respect – The Primary Concern
For low-income adults, trust and respect became the primary concerns with the healthcare systems. They were treated “less than” because of their income, race, and insurance status.
High Healthcare Costs Deterred Patients from Treatment
Patients hold off their treatments because they could not afford the higher medical bills – the additional costs of screening, medicines and after treatments deter them from taking the medicament.
Lack of Transportation
Delays in treatments due to lack of transportation facilities accumulate and worsen health conditions. Transportation barriers cause missed or rescheduled appointments, delayed care, or postponed medication use.
Lack of Insurance Coverage
Health insurance coverage helps in reducing the cost of treatment. Because most of the people do not have health insurance, they avoid getting costly treatments.
The patients residing in low areas are usually illiterate and are culturally, economically backward. They keep themselves socially isolated. They do not feel comfortable and rather believe in treating themselves naturally.
The grants are given to mobile health clinics to meet these patient needs. The comforting environment makes the patient’s experience more trustworthy and convenient and makes them more open to health professionals.
Challenges of Mobile Health Clinic
Undoubtedly, mobile health clinics close care gaps, address social determinants of health and promote health equity. But, they are not a cure to everything.
Mobile health clinics also encounter difficulties sustaining themselves like spatial limitations for equipment, the number of patients served, and challenges in recruiting clinicians.
Challenges that come in the way of Mobile Health Clinic are:
- Funding sources for the clinic
- Hiring and training of staff
- Logistical concerns such as hours of operation and locations to visit
- Evaluating the impact
Mobile health clinics are still filling a healthcare need. Support received through grants can help to meet these challenges and reach broader and unreachable patient populations.
How to Get Grants For Mobile Health Clinics?
- Identify the medically under-served service area and target population who has limited access to health care resources. Rural health centers are the most targeted areas that require mobile health clinics.
- Assess the health care resources and needs of the people with low poverty levels. Determine the number of people without health care insurance or other facilities.
- To receive federal funding, create nonprofit health centers providing primary care, screening, and preventive services.
- A business plan is required to define the budget, timeline, funding sources and narrative to explain the needs, goals, evaluation process and other requirements for federal funding.
- Apply for a medically underserved area or population, a federal designation to receive start-up funding under Section 330 of the Public Health Service Act.
- Visit the U.S. government portal, Grants.gov, and register to apply for federal funds. On completing the registration, create an account.
- Apply for grants that will cover expenses like purchasing property and appropriate equipment, training and staffing.
The goal to address the social determinants of health and drive health equity is pressing.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources offer technical assistance. They help in completing application to receive grants for mobile health clinics.
The eligible clinics include centers for public housing residents, school-based health centers, and those who serve migrant workers and families or homeless.