Located on the north side of Milwaukee, Ascension All Saints – Family Health Center cares for many of the most vulnerable populations in Milwaukee.
Analysis of patients’ social determinants of health has shown that they are at risk for poor health outcomes, according to Sandra Olsen, program administrator at Ascension Healthcare/Medical College of Wisconsin.
“Nevertheless, we have demonstrated that with concentrated effort and innovative approaches, it is possible to achieve outcomes comparable and often exceeding those of suburban practices,” Olsen said. “Our approach begins with asking the community what it needs. Focus groups with patients, community members and leaders help to direct our efforts. As a result of their recommendations, we have established programs that go beyond the normal activities of a physician practice.”
One of the most critical needs identified is lack of healthy food. The center has addressed this in a variety of ways. In conjunction with a local church, for instance, the center has turned an acre of land on-site into a farm that grows produce, which is donated to patients and sold at reduced cost in the community.