By WAYNE ALLEN
PDT Staff Writer
The Counseling Center is creating two corporations to better focus on its expanding health care and housing services, Executive Director Ed Hughes said Wednesday.
Hughes said the new corporations will be Compass Community Health and Compass Point Housing. The Counseling Center will be the parent corporation of the three.
“We are looking to expand our ability to provide primary care to our clients and the community. We have so many clients now to just meet their primary health care needs, we need to grow,” Hughes said.
He said the 1634 11th St. location has mostly housed the center’s drug and alcohol services, along with the Family Healthcare Center.
“Over the next few weeks and months that location will become Compass Community Health. We will still have some drug and alcohol services at that location. The primary health care program (Family Healthcare Center) will expand and take over more of that facility,” Hughes said.
He said the center is actively recruiting additional staff for its primary health care program.
This move follows the acquisition in February of State Rep. Dr. Terry Johnson, who was hired as its medical director, and Sondra Hash as program director.
Compass Point Housing will be focused on managing The Counseling Center’s different types of housing.
“This cooperation will concentrate on providing good, safe housing for our clients. They will also be charged with creating more housing,” Hughes said.
He said The Counseling Center has evolved over the years from primarily focusing on drug and alcohol programs to also providing medical and housing services.
“There’s a point where those of us who manage drug and alcohol services do not have the expertise. We know we need more expertise on the medical side and we need more expertise on the housing side,” Hughes said.
He said with this model it will essentially be three corporations working together, but at the same time have the talent to be able to be creative and innovative.
“I think this is a fairly natural step in our progression. If we are going to be serious about housing, if we are going to be serious about primary health care, we need to broaden our ability to attract professionals,” Hughes said.
He said these changes do not change the mission of the organization.
“It means that parts of our mission now have as high of a priority as the drug and alcohol part,” Hughes said.
The Counseling Center is also in the process of applying to become a Federally Qualified Healthcare Center.
Wayne Allen may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 208, or firstname.lastname@example.org.