ABC7: Venice Family Clinic gets new van, $1 million grant from Cedars-Sinai to help homeless outreach

November 30, 2023

By Tony Cabrera
Originally published on ABC7

Dr. Coley King is a street medicine doctor with Venice Family Clinic. He’s on a team that serves the homeless community with mobile clinics.

“I’ll drive it through Venice, I’ll drive it through different parts of the Westside, we’ll take it into Santa Monica, we have an outreach where we go up into Malibu,” said King.

Now, they’ll be able to reach more people after Cedars-Sinai donated a mobile unit, on top of $1 million grant.

“This mobile medical unit is remarkable…because it brings a unique ability for patients to be seen in exams rooms…out in the community wherever they are. If it’s for people experiencing homelessness…this brings a whole different level of capability in what they might be able to see…and what people might be able to experience, in terms of medical care, out in the field,” said Jonathan Schreiber, VP of Community Engagement, Cedars-Sinai.

Venice Family Clinic will be able to reach more patients on the Westside thanks to a generous donation from Cedars-Sinai.
The grant allows Venice Family Clinic to continue their mission of meeting people where they are – physically, emotionally and medically.

“Often they have mental health care needs or addiction needs,” said King. “Almost always going along, some type of medical need, but we need to address those mental health and addiction needs first so they can be more organized and ready to get things done.”

They’ve found this form of homeless health care can actually be a pathway to eventually getting people off the streets.

“Street medicine can often be that first engagement piece, that first trusting hello that gets someone ready to think about getting indoors,” said King.

Adrienne is a real life example. She hopes other follow in her footsteps. “There’s so many people out here just hollering and screaming ‘I don’t need medicine.’ I said you need medicine. ‘No I don’t.’ I said you’re in denial. You can’t get help because you can’t see reality.”

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