Patient Stories

Dental Story – May 2022

“Maria Amelia is a single mother who faces chronic economic fragility due to low income, as well as other cultural and social barriers. Maria Amelia came to Southwest Utah Community Health Center dba Family Healthcare more than ten years ago after searching for a primary health care home in her St. George, Utah community. She receives medical and dental care at Family Healthcare. She has a need for service in Spanish, which Family Healthcare offers. She is a beneficiary of the generous funding support provided by Delta Dental Community Care Foundation. In 2022, Maria required bridge work on her front teeth. The costs associated with this procedure were well beyond her financial capability. Family Healthcare providers were able to help Maria Amelia by drawing on the generous funding support provided by Delta Dental Community Care Foundation. Maria describes her experience as being excellent. She is very happy with care provided by Family Healthcare and grateful to have received financial support that allowed her to reclaim her oral health and a smile she is proud of. Her message to others who struggle economically and feel culturally marginalized is; “I 100% recommend that you seek dental care with Family Healthcare. They are thorough, compassionate, and always find a way to help. I only have great things to say about my experience and am thankful for the support Family Healthcare and Delta Dental have provided. The fact that I can receive such high-quality care at a cost I can afford has really changed my life. In the past I found it hard to make dental appointments due to financial hardships. Now, I’ve found a place that is affordable for my family. It makes me happy that I can give my kids the oral hygiene care they need.”

Family Healthcare Chronic Care Management Stories

Advocating for patients with chronic care needs

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Family Healthcare providers have been working with many special needs patients to help ensure they are healthy and safe. Family Healthcare is involved in a program called Chronic Care Management that allows a Registered Nurse to provide advocacy assistance for patients as they navigate a very complicated health care system.
One of these patients, who has multiple medical and behavioral healthcare needs, was assigned to the Chronic Care Management Program, and a Family Healthcare RN was then able to do what was required to arrange in-home health services for the patient. However, the patient ended up refusing care and landed in the ER multiple times with blood sugar levels higher than 800, a bone infection leading to amputation, and behavioral challenges that hindered the ability to deliver care.
The Chronic Care Management program allowed the Family Healthcare Registered Nurse to intervene throughout this process, as the patient moved from one skilled nursing facility to another, facing roadblocks and insurmountable challenges without help, including the loss of their home. The patient has ongoing needs for which Family Healthcare will continue to advocate and provide a healthcare home with integrated medical, behavioral, and dental care.
This is one example of how Family Healthcare providers advocate for patients and work with other agencies to help patients access the critical support services, as well as the healthcare they need and deserve.”

Teamwork in Chronic Care

Teamwork – by Laura Christensen, RN
As a Case Manager with Family Healthcare, I case manage one of Nurse Practitioner Betty Gould’s patients. The patient has chronic, life-threatening anemia. Recently, this patient was discharged from hospital and had run out of her over the counter iron supplement because she couldn’t afford it. Having not taken this supplement for a few days her anemia worsened, and she was again hospitalized, needing a blood transfusion due to critically low Hemoglobin.
Once stabilized, she was discharged to home, with home health services. My case manager role includes following up after the hospital discharge of a Family Healthcare patient. Per protocol I called the patient to check on her and help schedule a follow up appointment with her primary care provider, Betty Gould. I also reached out to the home health nurse to let her know she could call me regarding this patient if needed. After visiting the patient in her home, the home health nurse called back, concerned that this patient lacked food, had no means of accessing food, and couldn’t afford the iron supplement she so critically needed.
I reached out to a Family Healthcare Care Coordinator, who immediately jumped in to help with food resources for this patient. I then called Betty Gould to explain the medication situation. Betty decided to issue a prescription for the iron supplement, with a voucher to help cover the cost. When it was learned that the patient was homebound and would not be able to pick up the supplement prescription herself, Betty, without hesitation, offered to drop off the prescription with voucher at the pharmacy herself. Then another obstacle presented itself. The patient did not qualify for the voucher because she had insurance. Betty, again thinking quickly, looked to see if we had free samples and to our delight we did! I called the home health nurse who agreed to pick up the free iron supplements and deliver them to the patient that day. The patient was very grateful and told me that Betty really takes the time to listen and understand her patients. Betty has genuine compassion for her patients, which really shows in examples like this one.

Manuela & Daisy’s Story

Mi hija adulta Daisy, y yo hemos sido pacientes de Family Healthcare desde que nos mudamos a St. George hace once años. Nuestra experiencia en Family Healthcare ha sido muy positiva, y mucho mejor a lo que estábamos acostumbradas en California. Todo el Personal de la clínica, han sido muy amables, de buen corazón y nos han ayudado mucho. Para mí son como unos ángeles. Tenemos tantas historias acerca del cuidado que hemos recibido. Ellos siempre tienen una solución para nosotros, no importa que tan grande sea el desafío. Por ejemplo: Yo estaba teniendo problemas de la vista y necesitaba una operación muy costosa, y Daisy, quien tiene Parálisis Cerebral, necesitaba aparatos ortopédicos para sus piernas. Family Healthcare me ayudo a adquirir la cirugía para recuperar la vista que yo necesitaba, realizada por doctores voluntarios y el personal médico en la Ciudad de Salt Lake. Y Daisy también pudo recibir los aparatos ortopédicos! Más recientemente cuando me estaba siendo difícil adquirir el examen de COVID-19 necesario en anticipación de mi cirugía, la clínica de St. George nuevamente en su afán de ayudar más allá de lo normal, el Doctor Samuel Christensen se tomó el tiempo de salir a mi auto y asegurarse que yo tuviera todo el papeleo necesario para asegurar que todo estuviese en orden para cuando yo fuera a mi cita de la cirugía. Quiero compartir nuestras buenas experiencias para que otras personas puedan obtener la ayuda para el cuidado de salud que necesitan. Mi mensaje para otros es que no deben tener miedo por no tener el dinero suficiente, o por no hablar Inglés muy bien. La clínica de Family Healthcare siempre tiene una manera de ayudarles, y su personal que es muy caritativo habla Español. Pueden estar seguros que ellos intentaran todo lo posible por ayudarles. Me gustaría añadir también mi agradecimiento a la doctora Helen McMahan, su atención siempre tan amable y al pendiente de proveer al paciente lo que necesita. Anel Robledo y Beatriz Giron mi agradecimiento especial a ellas, siempre dispuestas a ayudarle a uno y hacerlo sentir en confianza y si la ayuda no está a la mano, ellas siempre van más allá para encontrarla. Sin ellas mi cirugía no hubiera sido posible.

My adult daughter, Daisy, and I have been patients at Family Healthcare since moving to St. George eleven years ago. Our experience at Family Healthcare has been very positive, and a big improvement over what we were used to in California. The staff at Family Healthcare are all so kind, good-hearted, and helpful. I think of them as angels. I have so many good stories about the care we have received. They always have a solution for us, no matter how big the challenge is. For example; I was having vision problems and needed expensive surgery, and Daisy, who has Cerebral Palsy, needed braces for her legs. Family Healthcare helped me get the sight-restoring surgery I needed, performed by volunteer doctors and medical personnel in Salt Lake City. And Daisy was able to get the braces she needed too! More recently when I was having trouble getting a pre-surgery COVID-19 test here in St. George, Family Healthcare stepped in to help once again, and always going the extra mile, Dr. Samuel Christensen took the time to come out to my car and make sure I had the paperwork I needed to ensure things would go smoothly when I arrived at my surgery appointment. I want to share our good experience so that others can get the healthcare help they need. My message to others is that you don’t have to feel afraid that you don’t have enough money, or that you don’t speak English well enough. Family Healthcare always has a way to help you, and the compassionate staff speak Spanish. You can trust them to try everything they can to help you. I would also like to share my gratitude to my Doctor Helen McMahan, her kind attention and gentle care, always striving to provide the best care and assist her patients. Special thanks to Anel Robledo and Beatriz Giron for always being willing and ready to help and, make us feel comfortable with them, and if the assistance is not within reach, they always go above and beyond to find it. Without them, my surgery would not have been possible.

We continue to evolve Family Healthcare according to the model of the Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) which puts patients at the center of the healthcare system, and provides primary care that is “accessible, affordable, continuous, comprehensive, family centered, coordinated, compassionate, and culturally effective.”

We are looking for various roles across our care teams and administration. If you want to help others and make lives better through compassionate quality healthcare service delivery, then we’d love to hear from you!





2276 E Riverside Dr.
St. George, UT 84790


Hurricane Middle School:  435-986-2565
Cedar City :  435-986-2565
After Hours Line:  435-986-2565

© Copyright 2022 | Family Health Care | All Rights Reserved | Family Healthcare is an FTCA Deemed facility and a Health Center Program grantee under 42 U.S.C. 254b, and a deemed Public Health Service employee under 42 U.S.C. 233(g)-(n).


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