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New health center opens in Barrett Station

Members of the Chambers family, Precinct 2 Employees, Adrian Garcia, Umair Shah, Justice Lucia Bate, Community leaders and members of the Barrett family cut the ribbon to open the clinic.

BARRETT STATION – Harris County Public Health and Commissioner Adrian Garcia are bringing health services to this historic community in East Harris County.

Residents will now have access to the new Health & Wellness Center at the Riley Chambers Community Center. The historic community, founded in 1889 by Harrison Barrett, a former slave, has more than 5,000 residents and has limited medical or preventative health services in the community. The closest ones are several miles away.

“Residents in Precinct 2 do not have quick access to these type of facilities. This year, I am making health care access a major priority. I want to improve access, increase resources, and investments to support our families who desperately need it,” said Commissioner Garcia.

Community leaders and residents thronged the Center’s grand opening Friday, January 10, at 10:30 a.m. inside the Precinct 2 Riley Chambers Community Center.

Commissioner Adrian Garcia and Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, Executive Director of Harris County Public Health (HCPH) spoke of the need for and concerning what is in store for residents before cutting a ribbon, and giving a tour the facility.

Harris County Public Health will be providing the Center’s low-cost, preventative health services.

Commissioner Garcia presented facts concerning health in Harris County: life expectancy in the county is about 78.7 years, however census tracts show as low as 65 years for low income while on the other side of town as high as 89 years. Several inside the county live more than 15 minutes away from a Trauma Center, including those with a high Social Vulnerability Index. About 1 in 5 adults lack health insurance county wide, some communities have more than 1 in 3 lacking health insurance. Local experts overwhelmingly agree that access is the primary challenge facing health in Harris County.

“So many diseases can be prevented through preventive health care, and we are looking forward to helping improve the health of this community. This center will provide physicals and sports exams, screenings for chronic diseases, family planning, immunizations and dental services,” said Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, Executive Director of Harris County Public Health.

In addition to Commissioner Garcia and Dr. Umair Shah, Rev. Malcolm Barrett and members of the Chambers family also spoke of the momentous benefits of health in the community.

As defined by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development, Barrett is a low-to moderate income area, at least 51% of residents’ median household income in 2015 was 80% or less than the median income of the county. In addition, 37% of residents had a household income of less than $34,999.

The Riley Chambers Health & Wellness Center will begin seeing patients on January 13, 2020. Call 832.927.7374 to schedule an appointment, but Walk-Ins are welcomed.