FORT LAUDERDALE, Florida, September 30, 2021 / PRNewswire / – In response to the opioid crisis, the ongoing HIV epidemic and the COVID-19 pandemic in Broward County, Care Resource Community Health Centers, Inc. announces the launch of the Special Purpose Outreach Team (SPOT) Mobile Medical Clinic, which provides the only syringe service program (SSP) approved by Broward County and licensed under the Florida Infectious Disease Elimination Act (IDEA). SPOT is also responding to the immediate need to bring COVID vaccinations and mobile medical care to historically underserved communities.
A basic donation for the purchase of the SPOT mobile medical clinic was made by Peter B. Cinelli, MD, a retiree new York surgeon and Fort Lauderdale philanthropist. Additional funding is provided by United Way of Broward County, Care Resource and a Gilead FOCUS Award to support HIV / HCV testing and linkage to a first appointment. Future funding relies on grants and private donations due to the limited and restricted SSP funding available from the government.
“We have seen firsthand the increase in the number of patients coming to us with HIV, hepatitis C and other infections after sharing used syringes,” said Dr. Thomas smith, director of behavioral health services at Care Resource. “We have also seen a dramatic 51% increase in opioid deaths in Broward in the first half of 2021 compared to the previous year. SPOT’s PFS is essential in preventing these tragedies by taking used syringes off the streets, offering HIV and HCV testing, and preventing overdoses through education and the distribution of naloxone. ”
Access to health care is one of the many barriers for people struggling with drug addiction. SPOT will serve hard-to-reach communities and connect people who use intravenous drugs with essential services available from Care Resource, including medical and behavioral health care and HIV prevention and treatment plans. SSP participants are also five times more likely to be in treatment, such as Care Resource’s medically assisted treatment program, for substance use disorders.
“The SPOT program is an innovative approach to public health and will help everyone in Broward County: Participants, the public and our first responders by safely disposing of used syringes and reducing opioid deaths. We are proud to fund this crucial service, ”said Kathleen Canon, President and CEO of Centraide Broward County.
About the care resource:
Care Resource provides affordable, high-quality health care and support services to South Florida’s most vulnerable and diverse medically underserved populations. We offer comprehensive health and support services to meet all the health needs of our pediatric, adolescent and adult patients. A 501 (c) (3) nonprofit and federally accredited health center (FQHC), we have four locations located in Midtown Miami, Little Havana, Miami Beach and Fort Lauderdale. To learn more about Care Resource’s services, visit CareResource.org. Media kit available on CareResource.org/the-spot-media-kit.
SOURCE care resource