Polk County’s public health clinical services are now being offered at the Polk County Health Dept. at 161 Walker St. in Columbus through a collaboration with Blue Ridge Health.
Since July 1, Polk County Health and Human Services Agency has been administering Polk County’s Public Health Services to better serve the health and wellness needs of Polk County residents. Blue Ridge Health started their renovations on July 8 and opened their practice in the Walker Street location on Aug. 6.
Blue Ridge Health’s services include family medicine – including pregnancy care and family planning services – pediatric medicine, counseling, psychiatry, dentistry, school-based health services, discount pharmacy delivery services and nutrition. All insurances are accepted including Medicaid and Medicare and sliding fee discounts are available for those without insurance. No one is turned away for an inability to pay.
The Environmental Health division began operating in June and is providing septic and other sanitation inspections. Their new office location is 35 Walker St. in Columbus where they are co-located with Building Inspections and Zoning to increase collaboration and streamline services for the public.
The Women, Infant and Children (WIC) program began seeing clients July 1. Participants have shared that increasing WIC program services from two to five days a week has been helpful. The staff has begun outreach efforts to increase community connections and have completed a grant application for one-time funding for equipment and future constructions efforts.
Polk County Health and Human Services Director Joshua Kennedy said the Public Health Nurse has been actively connecting clients with Blue Ridge Health and has been setting up systems to receive and track communicable disease reports. She has also been actively preparing for outreach efforts and working with the Polk County School Nurses. One major focus is encouraging families to make sure their children are up to date with their immunizations.
Polk County Local Government will continue to share updates about Polk County’s Public Health Services. Questions can be directed to Polk County Health and Human Services Agency Director Joshua Kennedy by calling him at (828) 894-2114, Ext. 228 or emailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org.