On Wednesday, the Central Health Board of Managers approved moving forward with negotiations on ground leases with two Travis County Emergency Services Districts (ESD), which will be home to future health clinics in Elroy (Del Valle) and Austin’s Colony/Hornsby Bend.
“We committed to the community that we would bring more health care services to Eastern Travis County, and this is an important step in that process,” said Central Health President and CEO Mike Geeslin. “We can’t do this alone. It takes collaborative partnerships like the ones we’ve developed with the Travis County Emergency Service Districts to make it happen.”
If Central Health successfully negotiates leases with Travis County ESD 11 (Elroy) and ESD 4 (Austin’s Colony/Hornsby Bend), health clinics will be placed next to existing fire stations.
Future Del Valle Clinic – Travis County Fire and Rescue ESD 11 (Elroy/Kellam Rd)
The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing (UT School of Nursing) will partner with ESD 11 and open a health center that will provide primary care, behavioral and preventative dental care to area residents. Central Health would lease the land for $1 per year for 30 years, with three optional 10 year extensions. Central Health would then contract with the UT School of Nursing. The new center located at 7300 Kellam Road in Del Valle will see children and adults, and would likely open late 2019 or when construction is complete.
Travis County ESD Chief Ken Bailey says the partnership will combine emergency health care services with primary care, which is more efficient and ultimately better for the patient. “Most of the calls we respond to are related to medical care. If we can get residents connected to a primary care doctor and help them establish a medical home, it will improve the quality of life for Southeast Travis County.”
“Delivering health care in our community is a big challenge and it takes all of us working together to meet that challenge,” said Margaret Gomez, Travis County Commissioner Precinct 4. “I’m proud to see so many passionate people – and organizations – working together to improve the health of our residents.”
Future Austin’s Colony/Hornsby Bend Clinic – Travis County ESD 4 (Austin’s Colony/Hornsby Bend)
Central Health, Travis County, and CommUnityCare are planning to open a health center next to Travis County ESD 4 at 14312 Hunters Bend Road, offering residents primary care services when it opens in 2019. Central Health would lease the property for two years, with three optional one year extensions. This would be an interim step before a permanent health center is built later.
As housing costs in Travis County’s central core continue to increase, more and more of Central Health’s target population—those in households living at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL)—is residing in eastern parts of Travis County.
In 2015, Central Health formed the Eastern Travis County Health and Wellness Collaboration—a multidisciplinary team of more than 15 community-based health care and service providers—with a purpose of addressing the challenges faced by residents of Eastern Travis County. To ensure the community has a seat at the table when planning future access to care in their communities, Central Health also created neighborhood advisory committees including one in Del Valle and one in Austin’s Colony/Hornsby Bend.
In September 2018, the Central Health Board adopted the Fiscal Year 2019 budget, which included an estimated $3.5 million for priority projects in Eastern Travis County. This includes costs for land, facilities and services in Austin Colony/Hornsby Bend, Colony Park, Elroy (Del Valle) and Creedmoor.
Learn more about Central Health’s plans for Eastern Travis County at www.centralhealth.net/easterntravco.