Williamson Daily News

WILLIAMSON - Williamson Health & Wellness Center held a block party this weekend to mark National Health Center Week 2019. The event was part of a national campaign to increase awareness about health centers that provide affordable health care in their communities.

Williamson City Council and Mingo County Commission issued proclamations for the city and the county to declare National Health Center Week.

Williamson Health & Wellness Center is part of a network of health centers that serve more than 28 million people nationwide with 44 percent of health centers located in rural areas. Williamson Health & Wellness Center expanded in 2019 beyond the Williamson clinic sites to include a site in Gilbert.

Highlights of Williamson Health & Wellness Center accomplishments include:

n Reducing hospitalizations and unnecessary visits to the emergency room through the Community Health Worker program

n Creating 80 full-time jobs in downtown Williamson and Gilbert

n Providing dental and pediatric services for the community

n Establishing a clinic to provide quality care for patients with medication-assisted therapy for opioid use disorder

n Serving veterans throughout the area.

n Increasing access to healthy foods through cooking classes, Williamson Farmers Market, My Mobile Market and the "veggie box" program.

Other community health centers include Southern West Virginia Health Systems in Delbarton and Gilbert and Valley Health Systems in the northern end of Mingo County in the Kermit area.

This year's National Health Center Week 2019 will highlight how health centers are reaching beyond traditional healthcare to address factors that cause sickness, such as lack of nutrition, mental illness, homelessness and substance use disorders.