A stable existence thanks to outreach services
“The medicine I got from the mobile unit really helped me out. I take heart medicine and the pills really take the pressure off, help me live healthily, and think clearer. Medicine is pretty important when you are in pain.” –Jimmy Pyle, mobile center patient
On the La Clinica Mobile Health Center, Jimmy Pyle found a team of allies to help him connect with a better life.
For years, Jimmy, 63, camped near the freeway. In the winter when it was cold and wet, he sometimes would head to the Gospel Mission in Medford or Grants Pass. As he got older, he struggled more with the weather and other realities of living on the streets.
“I was having trouble being attacked camping out, people robbing me and assault,” he said. “I was afraid they would really injure me.”
The Medford Gospel Mission provided a safe place for him to stay. The La Clinica Mobile Health Center visits twice a week, and there Jimmy got medication for his high blood pressure and heart disease.
“The medicine I got from the mobile unit really helped me out,” Jimmy said. “I take heart medicine and the pills really take the pressure off, help me live healthily, and think clearer. Medicine is pretty important when you are in pain.”
But the team didn’t just provide medical care. They connected him with resources to help him get a copy of his birth certificate so he could get a state identification card. Bob Baumann, team lead for the Mobile Health Center, persistently called partner agencies asking for screenings and rescreenings until Jimmy linked up with an Options for Southern Oregon case manager. His case manager is helping him apply for Social Security and has found an assisted living facility where he can live once he secures the benefits available to him.
Jimmy got permission to extend his stay at the mission while he worked through medical and bureaucratic issues, so he didn’t land back on the streets.
“It was years in the making, getting him to stick around,” Bob said, noting that deep connections between La Clinica, the Mission, and Options helped make the difference.