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New Health Clinic Opens In South Bay

Aired 9/7/12 on KPBS News.

A new medical clinic opens in San Ysidro, an area that suffers from a shortage of health providers.

— Officials will celebrate the grand opening of a three-story state-of-the-art health center in Southeast San Diego today. The new clinic will offer care to a population that has few options.

South Bay residents have higher rates of diabetes and heart disease than people living in any other part of the county. That's due in part because the area suffers from a high uninsured rate, and a shortage of doctors.

The new community clinic hopes to change that. It's operated by the San Ysidro Health Center. The center's CEO, Ed Martinez, said the clinic will offer care that's in short supply.

"We're going to be providing a mental health program for children and adults. That's a very large unmet need in the area. We're going to increase our testing and treatment of people with HIV/AIDS," Martinez explained.

The King-Chavez Health Center will offer a wide array of other medical services, including pediatrics, primary care and dental care, all on a sliding scale.

Funding for the new center came from a $9.7 million federal grant. The San Ysidro Health Center was one of only 11 in California to receive such an award.

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