The 400 Mack Detroit Health Center in Midtown opened with an in-person ribbon cutting on Sept. 15. Operating in the new facility are Wayne Health and Wayne Pediatrics, two separate medical practice groups affiliated with Wayne State.
The center will put an emphasis on serving the “vulnerable and underserved” while tackling community health care in metro Detroit, according to Wayne Health. This mission is being carried out through the Center for Population Health Accountability and expanding access to primary care, preventive health and chronic disease management services.
Wayne State University Physician group filed for bankruptcy in 2018 and emerged in 2019. They rebranded as Wayne Health in 2020.
As part of a new Urban Children’s Health Collaborative, Wayne Pediatrics aims to create a healthier future for the community through pediatric care, research and medical education and training, Wayne Health said in a Sept.16 press release.
Wayne Pediatrics was created after University Pediatricians, a physician group once connected to WSU, became affiliated with Central Michigan University in July.
“Wayne Pediatrics and the collaborative will reframe how children and families receive care and services within the metropolitan Detroit community through fundamental systems evaluation and redesign —working with children and families, and collaborating with academic and community colleagues,” said WSU Director of Communications Matt Lockwood.
Serving as a training site for WSU School of Medicine, the new facility will benefit communities and students, said Eric McGrath, associate professor of pediatrics at WSUSOM. Students were fulfilling the pediatric component of their training at Children’s Hospital before UP changed partners.
“There's a real need for Wayne State School of Medicine to have a pediatrics department, you cannot have a medical school without one,” McGrath said. “It's a mandatory rotation, mandatory clinical clerkship, if you will.”
Students are expected to begin training in the new facility in January 2021, but some students are already getting involved at the health center, McGrath said.
Within the first month of the health center’s opening, the site is already planning community health events. The facility is hosting “Vaccines for Kids” on Saturday, Oct. 10, where free vaccines will be given to children who need them.
Second-year medical student Allison Surma said she is enjoying volunteering for the “Vaccines for Kids” event taking place on Saturday, Oct. 10
“So far, I have had a truly wonderful experience working with Dr. McGrath in preparation for the Vaccine for Children Health Fair to promote the new Wayne Pediatrics facility,” she said. “They clearly have put a considerable amount of time and effort into preparing for this event and they graciously invited year two medical students to volunteer as well.”
The introduction of students training at the facility could not happen at a more perfect time, McGrath said. As COVID-19 cases are occupying much of hospitals’ capacity, the health center provides an alternative for when people need to see a doctor.
“I like the concept that the third years in their clerkship of six weeks are going to be spending more and more time in a clinic setting, because that's really where healthcare is really trying to go and really avoid hospitals, if possible,” he said. “You need them there when you need them, but the majority of stuff can be handled as outpatient, if you have a good clinic."
According to Wayne Health, appointments are not needed for service but are recommended for convenience. To schedule, call (877) 929-6342.
Alanna Williams is a correspondent for The South End. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Photo by Quinn Banks, The South End's multimedia editor. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.