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News Foundation, JPS plan homeless resource center

Foundation, JPS plan homeless resource center

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Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

By Betty Dillard The Fort Worth Foundation announced Friday that it will build a 25,000-square-foot adult medical clinic and central resource center for the homeless on 1.5 acres purchased from JPS Health Network  on the city’s near east side. JPS will run the health clinic at 1513 Presidio St., near the existing East Lancaster Avenue homeless shelters. The foundation, which provides funds to organizations that feed the hungry and help the homeless, will create and fund a nonprofit entity to govern the center’s overall operations. About half the center will provide health services to the East Lancaster area community. Included in those services will be primary and preventive care; chronic disease management; behavioral health services; and podiatric, orthopedic and dental care. The remainder of the facility will assist the homeless in their “pursuit of stability, self-sufficiency and expanded opportunities,” according to the foundation. A 2011 JPS study identified more than 230 homeless patients who were frequent users of the health network’s emergency and inpatient services, incurring charges of more than $10 million. Those findings, along with the Mayor’s Advisory Commission on Homelessness’ Directions Home report in 2008 and A Plan for the Delivery of Health Care for the Homeless prepared by Tarrant County Commissioner Roy C. Brooks, formed the basis for building a community clinic. “This is just another great example of using private dollars for public good,” said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price. The facility is expected to become reality in late 2014 or early 2015.   bdillard@bizpress.net

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