Ann Fisher Raney, CEO of Turning Point, with Gwenn Rausch, CEO of Heartland Health Centers, at the opening of Heartland Health Center-Turning Point

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More than 50 people attended last month’s partnership reception for Heartland Health Center-Turning Point at 8324 Skokie Blvd. in Skokie. The new primary and behavioral health care clinic opened its doors on Jan. 7.

“This is really a match made in heaven for the two organizations,” said Gwenn Rausch, CEO of Heartland Health Centers. What began as an email exchange between Ms. Rausch and Turning Point Behavioral Health Care Center CEO Ann Fisher Raney soon became a shared vision and an “unshakable determination to build this health center,” said Ms. Rausch.

The two CEOs were joined by medical staff and a host of elected officials and community leaders at the partnership celebration on Dec. 19.

Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky recognized Ms. Rausch and Ms. Raney for their commitment to get the collaborative project done.

“The issue of access to affordable, quality health care turned out to be really the number one issue in the election campaign this year. This is not a partisan issue. People are struggling to get the kind of care they need. It is a simple desire on the part of the American people,” said Congresswoman Schakowsky.

The project was paid for with grants from NorthShore University Health System and the North Suburban Healthcare Foundation, which helped underwrite the build-out of the clinic and launch the joint effort.

In her remarks, Ms. Raney said, “The doors will be open to anybody who is seeking excellent, affordable medical care. They need to have no affiliation with Turing Point. This is a community clinic.”

A full range of primary and behavioral health services is available, including management of chronic illness, women’s health, pediatrics, immunizations, school and sports physicals, referrals to specialist care coordination, and discounted prescriptions.

As a Federally Qualified Health Center, Heartland Health Center-Turning Point provides primary care to all, with sliding scale fees that start at $30 per visit for those without insurance.

The clinic will have the added benefit of providing wrap-around services for clients of Turning Point Behavioral Health Care Center. “It was intuitive,” said David Rahija, President of Skokie Hospital. “Having physical and mental health teamed together is a no-brainer. To be able to do that in partnering with these two great agencies accentuates the mission we do every day,” said Mr. Rahija.