A Voice for the Good: Bowen Health Clinic
3Rivers is proud to support so many of the non-profit organizations that are committed to making our community a better place to live, work, and play, and we want to help spread the word about the difference they're making in our region. We’ve teamed up with 97.3WMEE to bring you A Voice for the Good, a series in which we feature local organizations on our website in the form of an informative articles as well as on-air segments highlighting the non-profits’ missions.
This article features Bowen Health Clinic—a local non-profit on a mission to “strengthen our communities and to improve the health and well-being” of those they serve!
We talked with Jena Covell, Senior Allen County Director of Bowen Health Clinic, to learn more about this organization and its work in the Northeast Indiana Community.
How did Bowen Health Clinic come to be? What’s the history/story behind how the organization initially got started?
Bowen Center started in 1961 as Four County Mental Health Clinic. It served Kosciusko, Marshall, Wabash, and Whitley Counties with one office in Warsaw that consisted of a part-time psychiatrist, a full-time psychologist, social worker, and secretary. Now we provide services in 26 Indiana counties with a staff of more than 1,400 therapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, primary care physicians, nurses, skills coaches, patient technicians, administrative staff, and more. Bowen Health Clinic offers mental health care, addiction recovery services, primary health care, crisis hospitalization, and transitional living.
What is the official mission of Bowen Health Clinic, and how is it currently being put into play?
Our mission is to strengthen our communities and to improve the health and well-being of those we are privileged to serve.
Our focus is on underserved populations that typically have limited access to healthcare. No one is turned away for an inability to pay.
How do you see the mission and vision of Bowen Health Clinic evolving in the future in the Northeast Indiana community? Where do you see your organization a year from now, or even five years from now?
Bowen is constantly evolving to meet the needs of the communities it serves. From adding services and locations, to remote options, and now adding primary care services; we are growing to meet the growing need.
Are there any exciting new developments, updates, or changes that have recently taken place at Bowen Health Clinic?
We are very excited about our primary care services. The life expectancy of people with mental illness is 20 years shorter than those without mental illness. By including primary health care under the same roof as our mental health care services, patients have ready access to care they would normally have to go elsewhere to get and often would neglect. By combining mental and physical health, we are helping our patients live better, longer lives.
What kind of impact has the global pandemic had on Bowen Health Clinic, and how has the organization pivoted or gotten innovative in response?
As you can imagine, COVID took a toll on everyone’s mental health and so there was absolutely no way we could pause services during the lockdown. Thanks to our resourceful staff and with a special shout-out to our amazing IT department, we were able to quickly shift to remote appointments via phone and video conference within a week. Not all community mental health centers were as fortunate. Patients were so grateful to be able to keep their standing appointments and many of them even preferred the remote option to in-person.
Could you share a standout story or two that really illustrates the impact Bowen Health Clinic has on those in our community?
We recently had a patient who had been struggling with advocating and managing medical, mental, and daily needs due to chronic pain, severe trauma history, and lack of support. Because she had access to Bowen Health Clinic and had a dedicated Skills Coach, she was finally able to get on regular Medicaid, which has provided her with better access to the continuum of care she needs. With therapy and skills coaching, she is now able to call doctors’ offices on her own, arrange her own treatment, can verbalize her needs to medical providers, and advocate for herself.
In addition, we recently opened a clinic in Rudisill Plaza. Our goal was to quickly build trust and provide access to quality healthcare for people who live in that area. We recently had a patient who walked there, accompanied by a 14-year-old boy. We soon found out the patient was walking down the street, miles away from our office. The boy realized she needed help and told her he would walk with her to Bowen Health Clinic because he knew she would get the help she needed there. We were in fact able to help her upon her arrival. Our goal of being a trusted provider in the area has been achieved!
How can those interested in your services go about getting started or getting in touch?
We make it easy to get the help you need. You can call us at 800.342.5653 and talk to our wonderful patient services team. They can answer all your questions and, when you’re ready, they can schedule an appointment for you. You can also visit BowenCenter.org to learn more and to schedule an appointment.
Are there other local non-profit organizations that Bowen Health Clinic works/partners with to enhance their programs?
We partner with hundreds of non-profits, social service organizations, and governmental agencies, including the Department of Child Services (DCS), the Indiana Division of Mental Health and Addiction, law enforcement, the courts, most social service agencies, and more.
Are there opportunities for community members to volunteer at Bowen Health Clinic and if so, how can they go about learning more?
We do not currently have standing volunteer opportunities but most of the non-profits we partner with do!
In what other ways can community members support Bowen Health Clinic—be it through monetary donations, material donations, education, etc.? Do you have an itemized wish list of any kind or utilize options like AmazonSmile to raise funds?
Bowen Health Clinic does not formally solicit contributions from individuals. The very best way to support us is to educate yourself and others about mental health, physical health, and addiction recovery.
Where can our readers learn more about Bowen Health Clinic or about getting involved?
Visit our website at BowenCenter.org for more information.
Is there anything else you’d like our readers to know about Bowen Health Clinic?
If you want to learn more about what we do, we’d love to give you a tour! Give us a call at 800.342.5653.
Interested in featuring your non-profit on our website and on 97.3WMEE’s A Voice for the Good? Text "VOICE" to 46862! Please note that this may lead you to incur standard text messaging rates or other applicable charges consistent with your wireless carrier/mobile phone plan.