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Options to ER: Central Health Partners with Urgent, Convenient Care Clinics

Routine and “after hour” health care now easier in Travis County for people who are low-income, uninsured.

(Austin) – Central Health Medical Access Program (MAP) members can now bypass the emergency room (ER) and get non-emergency care at convenient RediClinics and FastMed Urgent Care clinics throughout Travis County.

MAP members with routine medical needs such as cold and flu, seasonal allergies, ear infections, and other minor illnesses, may visit 19 RediClinics and FastMed Urgent Care clinics in Travis County. RediClinics are available at select H-E-B and H-E-B plus! stores in Austin, placing care within neighborhood grocery stores, while FastMed Urgent Care centers are free-standing clinics.

Increasing access to care supports Central Health’s mission of creating a model healthy community by connecting patients to high-quality, appropriate care in the most appropriate settings, at the most optimal cost.

“In the past, some of the people we serve felt the only option they had when they were sick or had a medical situation – especially after hours – was to go to the emergency room,” said Larry Wallace, Interim President and CEO of Central Health. “That creates longer wait times for people with real emergencies. Treating people in the ER is the most expensive type of care, and it’s not the most appropriate place for our patients to receive care for non-emergency health needs.”

About the Medical Access Program (MAP)
MAP is an innovative local program provided by Central Health that helps Travis County residents who are low-income and uninsured get health care, including primary care, prescriptions, specialty care, and hospital care.

“By offering RediClinics and FastMed to MAP members, Central Health is further expanding access to cost-effective, convenient care,” said Dr. Mark Hernandez, Medical Director of the Community Care Collaborative. “Many people delay going to the doctor for a sore throat or twisted ankle because they can’t afford to take off work. Now residents enrolled in MAP can see a provider in the evenings or on the weekend without having to go to the emergency room. We’re creating access to care that better fits their lives and their schedules.”

The new initiative is part of the Community Care Collaborative partnership between Central Health and Seton Healthcare Family that aims to better manage the care of Travis County’s low-income and uninsured patient population – what’s commonly referred to as the safety net population.

RediClinics are open seven days a week, with extended evening hours on weekdays. FastMed Urgent Care is open seven days a week, with extended evening hours on weekdays. In addition to care for common medical conditions, MAP families also benefit from health screening tests, vaccinations, and immunizations.

Same day or next day appointments can be made online at rediclinic.com and nextcare.com. MAP families only pay a $10 copay with their MAP ID card.

To find the nearest RediClinic or FastMed, MAP clients should visit www.medicalaccessprogram.net.