Howard Brown Health held a grand opening on Sept. 27 for its newest location at 1525 E. 55th Street in Hyde Park.
The new location is Howard Brown's second South Side locationthe first is on 63rd Street in the Englewood neighborhoodand is part of the organization's continuing efforts to expand its services beyond the city's North Side.
The organization had been operating a small office in the location for some time, but this expansion will allow them to see about 2,500 patients annually. The new clinic features six exam rooms and will operate six days a week with a staff of five or six persons, according to Howard Brown Health President and CEO David Munar. He added that one full-time and three part-time providers will be on site.
"It's our dream to expand our LGBT-focused health care to this part of the city," said Munar.
John Schneider, MD, will head up the facility. He has long worked with persons with HIV/AIDS locally; he called the clinic "part of a long journey to change the climate" for health care in the area.
"We're first and foremost very patient-centered," Schneider said. "... It's really important that they have a good experience."
The location is part of what Munar characterized as a "strong partnership" between Howard Brown Health and Chicago Center for HIV Elimination ( CCHE ), an educational research center affiliated with University of Chicago. Rebecca Eavou, CCHE's director of prevention, said that such a cooperation has been a rarity: "There are not many models for a for a research institution partnering with a [Federally Qualified Health Center]."
Howard Brown Health Board Chair Mario Treto, Jr., told Windy City Times, "We've been focusing on providing comprehensive health care across all of Chicago. We think this will be a great space for Howard Brown. It's an exciting day for all of us."