If you’ve never seen Riverview East, it is almost shocking when you pull up to the building. Painted a vibrant blue and sitting upon stilts, the school looks like it was plucked straight from a futuristic movie. There are large signs that direct you to the entrance of the School-Based Health Center (SBHC), which is located at the front of the building—facing the Ohio River. There are two entrances to the SBHC: one that connects the school to the center for the students, and another which faces outside and has a waiting room specifically for community patients.
I visited Riverview East on a warm Monday morning. The nurse practitioner was seeing a community member who spoke an obscure dialect and knew very little English. The patient needed a work physical in order to continue working at his new job. During the summer, the health center is open two days a week. The Friday prior to his appointment, the scheduled translator called the center and cancelled the appointment because they were not going to be able to make the visit. Unfortunately, because the center didn’t open until right before the patient arrived for their visit on Monday morning, there was not enough time to call the patient and let them know they should reschedule. Instead of sending away the patient, the Riverview East Health Center staff worked together to find a solution. They called the company they use for translating and found someone who could translate over the phone. Everyone who works at the SBHC was excited they could provide health services to someone who otherwise may not have been able to find a quality and affordable health home.