TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) — “I was shocked to hear and very disappointed,” Valeo patient, Rick Scarbrough said.
Scarbrough has had chronic asthma for years. Back in January 2017, he wasn’t happy to find out he could no longer get help for his asthma, at Valeo Behavioral Health. The primary care clinic opened in 2013, when Valeo joined forces with St. Francis Health and Washburn University’s School of Nursing.
However, in January 2017, St. Francis announced it would launch a new medical records system that would cost too much to include Valeo. That meant people on Medicare, like Scarbrough, would have to go elsewhere for their medical care.
“I would see anybody that took Medicare,” Scarbrough said. “It’s not that easy to find.”
That’s because many primary care doctors don’t accept patients with mental disorders. Scarbrough said getting to an emergency room wasn’t easy.
“Because of my anxiety disorder, I’m too frightened to get on the public bus,” Scarbrough said. “So, I’m reliant on my brother and on my case manager to take me around places.”
That’s all over now thanks to a $250,000 gift from the St. Francis Health Foundation. It means Scarbrough can get all his health needs taken care of under one roof.
“This is only a 2 block walk from my house,” Scarbrough said, “So, I can come here on my own anytime I need to and that’s extremely important to me.”
The money is expected to fund health care services at the clinic for about two years. There’s no exact date on when the health care clinic will open.