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New health clinic opening on east side

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For many elderly folks on the city’s east side, a lack of transportation means they live in a health care desert — far away from a primary care physician. A new Indiana University Connected Care clinic is looking to change that when it opens April 19.

The clinic, located at 7140 E. Washington St., is designed to help those on Medicare — traditional Medicare, Medicare Advantage and dual-eligible Medicare- Medicaid — and get the care they need. Patients can schedule same-day primary care appointments where they can spend 30 to 60 minutes with a doctor, get blood work and various examinations done and work with a pharmacist to fill prescriptions.

traditional Medicare, Medicare Advantage and dual-eligible Medicare-Medicaid.”

Erin Bhalla, community outreach coordinator for Indiana University Health, said the clinic’s “robust core team,” which includes a social worker, behavioral health professionals and care managers, should be fully staffed within the next year. Patients who need help understanding their health care options with Medicare or Medicaid will have on-site assistance, as well as access to continuing education for things such as diabetes management.

Led by Dr. Kamal Wagle, whose background is in family medicine and geriatrics, the Connected Care facility has the virtual capabilities to connect patients with Indiana University Health doctors downtown to ensure those on the east side don’t have to travel far to meet with their physicians.

Diane Allen, who works as the care coordinator for Eastern Star Church on the east side of Indianapolis, said the clinic will be a big help for the community.

“I don’t even really know where another clinic is on the east side, so this will help a lot of people,” Allen said. “It’s a good location, and elderly people don’t have to go downtown to see their doctor, so it’s going to help a lot of people in the community.”

Allen, who works in Eastern Star’s food pantry, plans to hand out flyers for the clinic to the community members the church serves.

For more information about Connected Care, visit iuhealth.org/connectindy.

Contact staff writer Breanna Cooper at 317-762-7848. Follow her on Twitter @BreannaNCooper.

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