Get Care Program

If you’ve become unemployed and uninsured by the pandemic, Vecino Health Centers has your back.

Vecino Health Center’s Get Care program is all about removing the financial barriers that can get in the way of receiving regular health care. 

Patients enrolled in the Get Care program can receive medical and counseling services through telehealth or at Vecino’s clinics, as well as in-clinic dental care, without worrying about how much it’s going to cost.

Once enrolled, fees for care are established on a sliding scale, based on your current financial situation.

What’s more, you may be eligible for medical and other health coverage, but knowing your options can be very challenging. We’ll help you understand and apply for the benefits that are available to you.

Get Care and Stay Well!

We care about your health. It’s especially important to make it a priority during these uncertain times of COVID-19. There’s no reason to delay your health care if you’re unemployed.

Call 713-674-3326, or enter your name, and email or phone in the form below and an eligibility specialist will contact you to start the application process.

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Denver Harbor Family Clinic welcomes Dr. Irma Tamayo

Dr. Irma Tamayo

Many patients at Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic already recognize the newest doctor on staff. Dr. Irma Tamayo spent three years at the clinic during her medical residency with the Houston Methodist Family Residency Program

Patients and staff are glad to see her return, this time as a permanent staff member.

“Patients really appreciate Dr. Tamayo’s ability to understand what they are going through and the time she takes explaining their medical issues,” says Vecino’s CEO Daniel Montez. “She is a great fit for Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic.”

The clinic made a positive impression on Dr. Tamayo. 

“There is such a sense of community here,” she says. “Denver Harbor Family Clinic feels like home.”

Native Spanish speaker and first-generation immigrant

Dr. Tamayo is a first-generation immigrant and native Spanish speaker. She is one of four children raised in the Rio Grande Valley by a single working mother. 

With that background, she quickly understands and appreciates the challenges that many of Vecino’s patients face. 

“The first time I left the valley was for college. It was a culture shock even though I was still in Texas.”

Growing up, two of Dr. Tamayo’s uncles were doctors in Mexico. When she or her brothers got sick, her mother took them over the border to one of their clinics. She remembers sitting and playing with the medical tools as a child. This is when she first started thinking about a career in medicine. 

Also during her childhood, Dr. Tamayo’s maternal grandmother died from a heart attack at just fifty nine. After this experience, she knew for sure she wanted to be a doctor. 

“I saw how my grandmother’s death affected my family, and I knew I wanted to prevent other people from feeling that pain.” 

A “small-town feel” at Denver Harbor Family Clinic

One of the things Dr. Tamayo likes best about Denver Harbor Family Clinic is the small-town feel. It reminds her of working at a rural clinic in Texas while in medical school.  

“I like the fact that I get to see the mom, the grandma, the baby, and get to know the whole family,” says Dr. Tamayo. “There is such a sense of community. Denver Harbor Family Clinic feels like home.”

Dr. Tamayo knows many working families and uninsured patients at Denver Harbor Family Clinic can’t take time off work for specialist appointments outside the clinic, or afford expensive tests and labs. Because of this, she says she and the other doctors operate like a small-town clinic. 

“We do as much as we can for patients during one appointment, right here at the clinic. We meet patients where they are and serve their healthcare needs in a way that really works for them.” 

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

Same-day results on COVID-19 testing available by appointment

Call for a COVID-19 screening and testing appointment at Vecino's Denver Harbor Family Clinic

COVID-19 Testing

Same-day results on COVID-19 tests are now available at Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic. The clinic provides comprehensive screening, testing, and follow-up by appointment.

If you are experiencing symptoms or have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus, call to be screened and tested for the coronavirus.

Vecino Health Centers is committed to keeping our patients, staff, and families safe. We are taking proactive steps to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 at both of our clinics, and want everyone to have current information about how to protect yourself and get the care you may need.

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

People with COVID-19 have reported a wide range of symptoms ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. It can take as little as two days or as long as 14 days for symptoms of COVID-19 to appear.

People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • New loss of taste of smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

This list does not include all possible symptoms and it evolves as we learn more about COVID-19. For the most current information, check here for a link to the CDC.

Do I need to be tested for COVID-19?

If you have symptoms call to make an appointment to get a screening and test. The CDC provides these considerations for who should get tested:

  • People who have symptoms of COVID-19.
  • People who have had close contact (within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes or more) with someone with confirmed COVID-19.
  • People who have taken part in activities that put them at higher risk for COVID-19 because they cannot socially distance as needed, such as travel, attending large social or mass gatherings, or being in crowded indoor settings.
  • People who have been asked or referred to get testing by a healthcare provider, health department, or contract tracer.

Not everyone who is sick needs to be tested.  If you are experiencing only mild symptoms and have not been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 you may not need to be tested.

What if I feel sick but don’t have COVID-19 symptoms?

Call the clinic at 713-674-3326 or contact Houston Methodist Virtual Urgent Care. To help prevent the spread of COVID-19,  please don’t come into the clinic or go to the emergency room. After discussing your symptoms, clinic staff will confirm will advise you on how to treat your symptoms from home or will make an appointment for you to safely be seen by your health care provider in the clinic.

How do I keep my family safe from COVID-19?

  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Wash your hands with soap and water regularly
  • Cover your cough and sneezes
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth
  • Avoid close contact with sick individuals
  • Disinfect and clean commonly touched surfaces
  • Avoid nonessential travel to at-risk countries

Vecino’s Airline Children’s Clinic specializes in COVID-19 testing for infants, children, and teens

The providers at Vecino’s Airline Children’s Clinic are specialists in COVID-19 testing for infants, toddlers, children, and teens through age 17. Testing is administered inside the clinic or at the drive-through station in the parking area. Results of the tests are provided on the same day.

To make an appointment for your children at Airline Children’s Clinic, call 713-695-4013

Prenatal care during the coronavirus pandemic

Prenatal care during COVID-19 pandemic

Keeping prenatal patients safe during the COVID-19 pandemic

In-person prenatal care is important for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. When possible, some appointments may be conducted through our telemedicine platform so patients can talk to their team of providers from home.

Safety protocols are continuously updated to protect patients and staff at Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic. They include:

  • Any patient who is suspected to have been exposed to the coronavirus is isolated from other patients.
  • Check-ins for appointments are by phone and patients can wait in their vehicles for their appointment.
  • Masks are provided and are required of all staff and patients.
  • Social distancing is enforced throughout the clinic.

Prenatal care is the health care women get when they are pregnant; it is the foundation for a healthy pregnancy and a safe delivery. 

When you are expecting, you need this special care and attention to make sure you and your baby are healthy and strong.

A team of experts, including our Women’s Health Coordinator, offers comprehensive care from conception to postnatal care, ultrasound, and childbirth service at St. Joseph Hospital.

 

What happens a prenatal exam?

Your first prenatal appointment will probably be a long one. Your provider will give you a complete checkup and will check your blood and urine to confirm the pregnancy and calculate your due date. Depending on how far along you are, your doctor may also perform your first ultrasound.

Regular prenatal visits are important

For a healthy pregnancy, your providers will want to see you regularly. Each visit is important. Here are some other things you can expect during your prenatal visits:

  • You will meet the team that will take care of you and your baby
  • You will get your blood pressure checked
  • Your baby’s heart rate will be checked
  • Your weight will be monitored
  • You will be able to get answers to any questions you may have
  • You’ll learn how to manage common symptoms like nausea and vomiting, swelling, cravings, and mood swings
  • You’ll find out the sex of your baby (after the first trimester)
  • Our team will assist you to be prepared to give birth

Prenatal health services are important for you and your baby

Pregnancy complications can happen even when you are healthy. The best way to avoid them and deliver a healthy baby is by staring prenatal care early in the pregnancy.

Research shows that babies of mothers who do not get prenatal care are more likely to have a low birth weight, which may cause health problems. In addition, the likelihood that a baby will die at or soon after birth is higher when mothers do not receive prenatal care.

How much does prenatal care cost?

Most insurance plans, including Medicaid, cover all prenatal care costs. If you don’t have insurance, Vecino can help you apply. We also offer a financial assistance program if you don’t qualify for insurance. Prenatal care is affordable for everyone.

 

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

4 things every new dad should know about babies

4 things every new dad should know about babies

Congratulations on becoming a father! Being a new dad will probably be one of the most exciting – and sometimes scary – events of your life. While parenting is not always easy, with a little guidance, support, and trial and error, you will adjust to fatherhood in no...

read more

Coping with stress

COVID stress management

If you feel like stress is getting in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row, the licensed professionals on Vecino’s counseling staff can help.

Call 713-674-3326

Ask for a telehealth counseling appointment. New patients are welcome!

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic can create anxiety and stress and can feel especially overwhelming for people who were already living in stressful situations. Perhaps you have older family members that you are worried about, or you are among the more than 760,000 Texans whose job status has been affected by the outbreak. Maybe social distancing has got you feeling isolated from your friends and family as you try to keep yourself and your family healthy during this time.

Maintain your emotional health

Regardless of your situation, it’s important to know that it’s natural to feel stressed, anxious, and overwhelmed during these uncertain times. Everyone reacts differently to high-stress situations, but the good news is that there are things you can do to maintain your mental well-being even in the face of this new crisis. Here are four tips for coping with coronavirus stress from licensed professionals from Vecino’s counseling department.

Create a daily routine and stick with it

Creating – and maintaining – a daily routine can help you reduce stress gain back some control. While it’s not necessary to build a detailed routine or plan out every hour of your day, setting some time for carrying out essential tasks like eating, exercising, sleeping, working or doing housework, and spending time with your family can give you structure and help you stay sane during this time.

But also remember that it’s normal to feel overwhelmed and worried right now. Be gentle with yourself, and don’t feel guilty if you are not being as productive as you’d like or if you don’t feel like sticking to your routine on some days.

Take a break from the news and social media

Being informed, especially about what’s happening in Houston is important. Reading what experts and trusted sources are saying about the virus can help you make the right decisions on how to protect your and your family’s health.

But there is also a lot of false information and uncertainty, and reading the news or scrolling on social media all day can add to your existing stress and fears.

If you find yourself reaching for your phone more often than ever before, try limiting the number of times you check the news for updates to a couple of times per day. Also, step away from social media if you start feeling overwhelmed and try to use that time to do something else.

Connect with others

Study after study has shown that loneliness and isolation can be bad for your health, increase your stress levels, and put you at risk of developing a chronic disease. So, while right now we must practice social distancing, it’s important to stay connected with family and friends.

We are lucky to be living in a time where we can talk and also see our loved ones even when we can’t get together with them in person. Make it a point to reach out to your friends and family via phone, WhatsApp, text, FaceTime, or other digital platforms frequently.

We’re here for you

Here at Vecino, your health and well-being continue to be our top priority. If you feel like stress is getting in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row, our licensed professionals on the counseling staff can help. Call Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic at 713-674-3326 to make a teletherapy appointment and get the support you need from your own home.

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

Fight the flu

Getting the flu vaccine is more important than ever this year because of the coronavirus pandemic. Everyone six months or older should get a flu shot.

fight the flu, vaccination
Flu vaccinations are included, at no additional cost, with checkup exams at Vecino Health Centers.
If you’ve had a checkup at Vecino since July 8, 2020, call to schedule your flu shot; there will be no additional charge. For others, flu shots are covered by insurance or provided at discounted rates.

The flu vaccination can reduce your risk of getting the flu and help save medical resources needed to care for people with COVID-19.

 

Three simple things we can all do to help prevent the flu 

  1. Get yourself and your family vaccinated! Doctors recommend that anyone six months and older should get a yearly flu vaccine. This includes pregnant women.
  2. Mask up. Cover your nose and mouth with a mask when out in public.
  3. Wash your hands. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and make sure your children do, too. 

Is the flu vaccine safe? Yes!

The flu vaccine is very safe for most people older than 6 months of age. It is also very effective and can reduce your risk of getting sick with the influenza virus by 40 to 60%.

A common worry about the flu vaccine is that it can give you the flu. That is not true!

Flu shots are made from “dead” or inactivated forms of the influenza virus that cannot make you sick. People who get the flu shot rarely have complications related to the vaccine.

What to do if you think you or someone in your family has the flu

If think you or your children have the flu, make an appointment to see a doctor at the clinic or online through telehealth. This is especially important for pregnant women, young children, and people over 65. New patients are always welcome at Vecino Health Centers.

Flu symptoms

Symptoms of the flu include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Body aches
  • Headaches
  • Chills
  • Fatigue

And finally, if your doctor says you have the flu, take your medication and stay home! People are usually contagious for 24 hours after a fever is gone.

Schedule an appointment today at Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic. Call: (713) 695-4013

We accept Medicaid, CHIP, and other insurance. Assistance is available for uninsured patients.

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

I just found out I’m pregnant! Now what?

Make an appointment for prenatal care

One of the best things you can do for the health of you and your baby is to start getting prenatal care. Prenatal care is the care you get when you are pregnant; it is the foundation for a healthy pregnancy and a safe delivery. Pregnancy complications can happen even if you are healthy. The best way to avoid complications and deliver a healthy baby is by starting prenatal care early in your pregnancy.

Fine-tune your eating habits

Eating a healthy diet during pregnancy is important to your baby’s growth and development. In order to get the nutrients you both need, you must eat from a variety of food groups, including fruits and vegetables, bread and grains, protein sources, and dairy products.

Start taking prenatal vitamins

Although the main source of vitamins and nutrients needed during pregnancy should come from your food, a daily prenatal vitamin can help fill the gaps.

Free prenatal vitamins are provided at your first prenatal visit to Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic.

Comprehensive prenatal health services at Vecino Health Centers

A team of experts, including Women’s Health Coordinator, Dr. Magdalena Brooks, offers comprehensive care from conception to postnatal care, including ultrasounds. Childbirth options are available at Houston Methodist and St. Joseph Hospitals.

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

3 reasons men should get health checkups during the coronavirus pandemic

health checkups for men during coronavirus

“I’m too busy.” “It’s too expensive.” “I feel fine. I don’t need to see a doctor.” Sound familiar? These are just a few reasons why many men tend to avoid getting routine medical checkups. But the truth is, avoiding routine screenings and checkups puts the health of men at risk in more ways than you may think, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.

Men: here are three reasons to schedule a checkup today:

1. You can reduce the risk of serious illness if you’re exposed to the coronavirus

One of the most important reasons to get a checkup now is to find out if you have any underlying problems before there are any symptoms. With screenings, conditions can be detected early, when they’re most treatable.

Your health care provider will screen for common conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, asthma, anxiety, and depression as part of every checkup. They’ll also help you learn how to keep your immune systems strong.

Preventive care, including annual physical exams and screenings, is more important now than ever. Men want to be as strong as they can be for their families, and regular checkups are an important way to ensure they are doing all they can to be healthy.

Free Men's Grooming Kit with checkup at Vecino Health Centers

Let Vecino help you feel good and look good. Each kit includes toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, razors, shaving cream, deodorant, and a reusable facemask.

Available with every Men’s Health Checkup starting August 3, 2020.

Call 713-674-3326 to make an appointment.

2. You can save money with regular checkups

If you don’t have health insurance, health care can be really expensive. Even if you do have insurance, your premiums, copays, and other expenses can add up quickly. That’s why many people avoid seeing their doctor and end up going to the ER when the problem gets worse. 

Vecino’s Get Care program removes those barriers to health care. If you don’t have insurance, we offer discounts on a sliding scale so that you can afford the care you need. If you do have insurance, but are concerned about the costs of tests and immunizations, you can rest assured that we minimize those charges as much as possible. That means when you come in for a checkup, there aren’t those additional annoying charges for a flu shot or onsite tests.

Studies show that people who have a health care home like Vecino Health Centers have lower health care costs than those who only use the emergency room or go to specialists. That’s because regular checkups with your primary doctor can detect conditions early, when they’re more likely to be treatable.

3. You can take charge of your own health 

Let’s face it: many of us don’t get checkups because we’re afraid to find out that something’s wrong. Being anxious about the “what ifs” is common. But keep in mind that the earlier something is detected, the earlier treatment can begin. And the earlier treatment begins, the greater the chances are for success.

Most diseases that threaten men’s health, like heart disease, prostate cancer, colon cancer, and diabetes, can be prevented and treated early on. So, regardless of what you learn at your checkup, you will walk out confident that you’re in charge of your own health, and you won’t have to keep worrying about those troublesome “what ifs.”

 Regardless of your role—be it father, husband, brother, son, or just a friend—you probably want to be as strong and healthy as you can be. After all, being there for the people you love starts with taking care of your own health first.

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

4 things every new dad should know about babies

Dad with newborn

Congratulations on becoming a father! Being a new dad will probably be one of the most exciting – and sometimes scary – events of your life.

While parenting is not always easy, with a little guidance, support, and trial and error, you will adjust to fatherhood in no time. 

Every new dad should know a few things about babies: how much babies sleep, why babies cry, when babies need checkups, and why dads need checkups too.  

1. Babies sleep a lot

Every baby is different; some are better sleepers than others. Newborns need plenty of sleep, so don’t be surprised if your baby seems to be sleeping for most of the day.

Newborns usually sleep for about eight or nine hours during the day and around eight hours at night. A newborn baby can sleep as many as 18 hours a day, in stretches of three to four hours at a time.

2. Crying can mean many different things

Newborns not only sleep a lot, but they cry a lot too! Crying is how babies communicate, so it is up to us as parents to figure out what their crying is trying to tell us.

As you come to know your baby more and more, it will be easier to tell what the cries mean and comfort your baby faster.

These are some things your baby could be trying to communicate when he or she is crying:

  • I need my diaper changed.
  • I’m hungry.
  • I’m bored.
  • I’d like some attention.
  • That’s too much attention.
  • I’m in pain.
  • I’m tired.
  • I’m waking up.
  • I need to poop!
  • I’m uncomfortable.

3. Babies need health checkups and immunizations

Babies grow and develop very quickly. It is important for a pediatrician or family doctor to monitor their development at Well Check Exams. Immunizations are included as part of exams, so you don’t have to worry about keeping track of them or missing any.  

Vecino Health Centers follows the guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics and recommends that newborns get checkups at the following ages in their first year of life:

  • 3-5 days after birth
  • 2 weeks
  • 1 month
  • 2 months
  • 4 months
  • 6 months
  • 9 months
  • 12 months

You can talk with your baby’s doctor or nurse about any questions or concerns you have about your baby or being a new parent during the Well Check Exams. Whether the question is about sleeping, crying, eating, peeing, pooping, or anything else, our health care professionals will be happy to help!

New patients are welcome.

Schedule a checkup for you and your baby today!

Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic

713-674-3326

Vecino’s Airline Children’s Clinic

713-695-4013

4. Your health is important

One of the most important things you can do for your children is to be a good role model by taking care of your own health.

Regular health checkups are as important for you as they are for your baby, but for different reasons. There are important vaccines that you should have when you are around a newborn, such as the one protecting you from whopping cough.

An annual checkup will help you stay healthy and can help detect diseases early, before there are any symptoms, making them easier to treat and manage. Undiagnosed and uncontrolled chronic conditions such as diabetes and heart disease can lead to complications like heart attack, stroke, kidney damage, and vision loss.

You can model the importance of checkups to your son or daughter right from the start.  Schedule a checkup today, and give your children the gift of a dad who cares about his health!

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program

Encourage men to schedule regular checkups

Encourage men to get regular checkups

Being a father, a husband, and a provider for a family is not easy. Hard-working men of all ages have many daily challenges and often neglect their own health.

An annual medical exam helps men prevent costly and debilitating chronic illnesses that can limit their ability to have productive lives.

As a gift to our male partners, friends, and relatives, let’s make sure they schedule their annual medical checkups. Appointments are available at Vecino’s Denver Harbor Family Clinic.

New patients are welcome.

Schedule a checkup today!

713-674-3326

Screenings detect silent symptoms

Undiagnosed diabetes can lead to heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, vision loss, nerve damage and impotence. These complications can be avoided through diet, exercise, and weight loss. In some cases medication is also prescribed.

What’s your blood pressure?

Nearly half of adults in the United States have high blood pressure, and the risk for it increases with age. In many cases, high blood pressure has no warning signs. It  can result in serious medical conditions such as heart disease, stroke and kidney failure. A blood pressure test is part of every regular checkup. If a patient’s blood pressure is high, we can help them lower it and keep it lowered.

Vecino Health Centers is a Gold Level participant in TARGET BP, an initiative of the American Heart Association and the American Medical Association that helps helps health care organizations improve patient blood pressure rates.

Help the men in your life make health care a priority

Life is not easy for many working men, and many avoid routine checkups for as long as possible. Do you have someone in your life like that?

Help your spouse, partner, father, brother, or other male relative or friend live a long and healthy life by encouraging him to schedule regular medical checkups. For a little extra encouragement, offer to go with him or schedule your own checkup on the same day.

Unemployed or uninsured?

Don’t worry. Vecino Health Centers offers financial assistance so everyone in your family can get the checkups and other care they need. You may even qualify for other benefits, we’ll help you understand your options.

Just ask about our Get Care program