MT. HEALTHY, Ohio — Dolores Lindsay has made providing community health care services her life's work.
Lindsay, founder and CEO of The HealthCare Connection, will open a $4.8 million community health center in Mt. Healthy on Friday. The new center could start seeing patients as early as next week.
The Compton Road facility will offer everything from dental services to COVID-19 testing. At 30,000 square feet, it's more than double the size of the previous facility in an old shopping plaza on Hamilton Avenue.
“This is a complete move, and it is an expansion in the sense that we’re expanding services that were not offered at the old facility,” Lindsay said.
The new facility is being furnished with new medical equipment from top to bottom. The new community health center does something the previous facility didn't have the room to do — offer dental services.
“We have an eight-chair dental unit that compares to our site in Lincoln Heights,” Lindsay said. “It had been the plan always to expand the oral health. We were just not able to do it.”
The facility also offers medical care for adults and children.
Lindsay said they are opening the new facility at a critical time. In addition to students needing physicals and regular checkups for school, the flu season is coming and, of course, COVID-19 tests will be needed.
“As we get here and get settled, we will do more community testing. That is one of our goals; it is one of the expectations of our funding source,” Lindsay said.
Access to quality health care is one reason why they expanded the Mt. Healthy footprint. Lindsay said for some patients, transportation is either not available or limited.
The new community health center brings access to those needs closer.
In addition, Lindsay knows that fear or concern about COVID-19 kept many patients away from the center. However, she said, they are beginning to see that turn around.
“I think that what we are seeing is that our numbers are beginning to get closer to what they were pre-COVID,” she said. “There’s pent-up demand, pent-up need."
Lindsay started the first community health care facility in Lincoln Heights in 1967, more than 50 years ago, with her husband and support from community members. The facility consisted of four rooms in a rented apartment building.
Now, Lindsay is ready to retire. She doesn't have a date set, but upon reflection, she said there are many supporters who helped her open several health centers.
“I’m happy that I did. I’m happy that I did not give up, "she said. "I’m happy that I had the support. I’m grateful that we finally made it.”