what we do
We primarily provide primary care through The Clinica Esperanza/Hope Clinic Emergency Room Diversion Project, or The CHEER Clinic, which is a walk-in clinic providing non-emergent primary care to uninsured adults. This clinic helps to tackle a major problem and unnecessary cost in the American healthcare system: the overuse of the emergency department for non-emergent medical needs due to underinsurance. Instead of going to the emergency room for back pain or the flu and overpaying for care, community members can walk into our clinic and be served by a Spanish-speaking doctor for free. Since the start of CHEER in 2012, we have provided over 5,120 free visits. Many of these patients also return for follow-up visits and build long-term relationships with our medical providers through the Continuity of Care Clinic. We also provide a specific women’s clinic that focuses on gynecologic and reproductive care.
Medical Student Clinic
Medical students from Brown’s Alpert Medical School come each week to provide free clinical care and gain experience in culturally sensitive care to an underserved community. Our medical students also provide health screenings within the community.
Vida Sana is a community health education program that supports patients with metabolic syndrome who are at risk for diabetes by providing nutrition education, exercise support, and cooking classes in a small group setting. Vida Sana is currently in its fourth year, having enrolled over 640 participants. The program has been recognized for its successes, as an article published in the Journal of Community Health reports that “nearly 90 % of Vida Sana participants showed an increase in their health literacy, and at least 60% of participants decreased each of the risk factors (blood sugar, cholesterol, body mass index or waist circumference) associated with metabolic syndrome.”
Diabetes Prevention Program
Clinica Esperanza is a CDC-DPRP recognized provider of the Diabetes Prevention Program curriculum that educates individuals with pre-diabetes about how to lead a healthy life and prevent the onset of diabetes. Pre-diabetes is incredibly common - it is estimated that 1 in 3 American adults have pre-diabetes, the grand majority of it undiagnosed. Clinica Esperanza serves as the DPP provider for the Olneyville Health Equity Zone in Rhode Island. Learn more about the Health Equity Zone and related services for Olneyville residents here.
This successful and long-running community health worker program was started in 2010. Within it, bilingual community members are trained in case management, outreach, health education, advocacy and medical interpreting. The navegantes help patients navigate the health system, apply for free care, apply for insurance, find community resources and learn to use our walk-in CHEER clinic instead of emergency departments when appropriate. The Navegantes are also the instructors of the Vida Sana and Diabetes Prevention Program classes, proving our commitment to a culturally appropriate community health model.