Austin , Texas prides itself on being focused on a healthy environment and healthy residents and many of the city and state-sponsored parks and recreation areas contribute to that focus. Consequently, Austin and its residents are often referred to in various lists related to healthiest areas to live.
According to Money magazine’s “100 Best Places to Live” article in 2006, 82.2% of Austin residents have a health insurance plan. The average Body Mass Index is 27 indicating a rather fit population. Both the cancer mortality and cardiac mortality rate are significantly lower than the national average.
Austin is also committed to doing their part in trying to reduce the number of un-insured in Texas by providing a number of medical care programs for un-insured or under-insured residents of Austin and the surrounding area who can not afford or do not qualify to obtain health insurance in Austin.
Community Health Center of Austin – http://www.communitycaretx.org/ – Currently, the City of Austin Community Care Services Department operates nineteen Community Health Center (CHC) service delivery sites which provide comprehensive primary care and medical, dental, and behavioral health services to residents of Travis County in Public Health Region Seven. The city manages these provider sites pursuant to an inter-local agreement with the District.
Six large centers are located in Northeast Austin, South Austin, and East Austin areas. Four smaller centers are located in the communities of Manor, Del Valle, Pflugerville, and Oak Hill. Six sites, including a mobile dental unit and vision center serve the homeless population of Travis County , and one center is dedicated to providing HIV/AIDS services. Clinical services include but are not limited to: primary care, medical, dental, behavioral health, women’s health, prenatal care, family planning, children’s health, testing for STDs and HIV, lab and x-ray services, care for chronic illness, and health education. Travis County has an estimated 172,000 uninsured residents or 19.3 percent of its population. Research indicates that many of these residents have great difficulty in accessing basic primary and preventive healthcare. Local safety net primary care providers, including the CHCs, consistently operate at more than 100 percent of their capacity. The CHC system plays a leading role in the community’s healthcare safety net. It is the medical home to about one-half of local safety net primary care patients. As the largest volume provider, the CHCs have worked diligently to respond to increasing community-wide demand.
Austin Women’s Hospital – In February 2002, the Austin City Council approved the creation of an acute care facility on the fifth floor of Brackenridge Hospital at 601 East 15th Street . The Austin Women’s Hospital opened in January, 2004, and is operated by the University of Texas Medical Branch . Entrance to the facility is via elevators located on Hospital Drive . A level one, general hospital operated by the City of Austin offering quality women’s health services including: Maternity (Labor and Delivery, Mother/Baby Couplet Care), Outpatient Services including: OB Triage, Outpatient Surgery, (elective tubal ligations only), Basic Ultrasound Services, Early Discharge of Newborns/Follow-up. Family Planning Services
Health Alliance for Austin Musicians – http://www.myhaam.org/ – a low-cost primary health care services, basic dental care and mental health counseling program for uninsured, professional musicians in the Austin-area, through HAAM, the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians.
HAAM Services Include:
The mission of the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians is to provide access to affordable health care for Austin ‘s low income, uninsured musicians, focusing on prevention and wellness. Austin is the “Live Music Capital of the World,” yet many professional working musicians are self-employed and rarely have access to health insurance. Without insurance, they can’t afford preventive health care, including primary medical care, basic dental services and mental health counseling.
The music industry is an important contributor to Austin ‘s economy:
Austin health insurance options consist largely of PPO health insurance plans. While there are numerous plans available on the market from dozens of companies, the larger trusted companies include Aetna , Blue Cross Blue Shield, Humana, Unicare, and United Healthcare. You can view online health insurance quotes from this website ( www.texashealthandlife.com ) or by calling local number (512) 246-9955 and speaking with Justin Lawhorn, an experienced licensed Texas Health Insurance broker.