If I could describe the last four months of service, I would say that it has been a “rewarding roller coaster ride.” Right before I started service, the Health Annex, my original host service site, suffered an unfortunate fire. This fire caused damage that was unrepairable, and as a result the West Philly clinic was shut down. Many employees (myself included) and patients that used to go to the Health Annex had to relocate to the Abbottsford Falls Clinic, which is located near the Germantown area of Philadelphia.
The news of the Health Annex shutting down was difficult for many people, but it was especially difficult for our pregnant patients, who I predominately serve, that found it hard to find transportation to the Abbottsford Falls clinic. However, despite these challenges, the prenatal team has made drastic efforts to assist our pregnant Health Annex patients, including providing them with transportation services.
Unfortunately, the fire incident inevitably caused us to lose a small handful of Health Annex patients. However, on a more positive note, the vast majority of our prenatal Health Annex patients maintained their practice with us and relocated to Abbottsford Falls clinic for care. This whole experience has taught some important lessons. For one, it has taught me the importance of resilience. The fact that Health Annex employees and patients were able to adapt to a whole new setting in such a short amount of time is admirable and shows that difficult times like these can be overcome. Furthermore, this incident taught me the importance of teamwork. There is no denying that this incident has been a challenge for many , but the fact the Health Annex community was able to come together for a better cause has taught me that with teamwork, anything is possible.
Image One: Exterior of the Health Annex
Image Two: Exterior of Abbotsford Falls Clinic
This blog was written by Zainab Mustapha who is serving as a Care Coordinator/Prenatal Patient Advocate with the Family Practice and Counseling Network- Health Annex.