The history of the Health Resource Center was captured in a six-minute video interview with CEO Dr. Connie Wilson, COO Dr. Bob Wilson, Clinical Director Ms. Vi Selzer, and the IKRON CEO Mr. Randy Strunk.
The HRC is deeply grateful to Bob Kelly (President and Executive Producer, KPG Creative, Mason OH), Tim Egan (Videographer), and the talented crew of personnel who donated their time and energy in creating this tribute to our clinic. We also want to thank Nancy Hollingsworth for stimulating the launch of this project and coordinating efforts to bring it to its completion. The video history was a glorious gift to HRC to commemorate the clinic's 20th anniversary of providing service to the Cincinnati community.
The Health Resource Center of Cincinnati, Inc., began operations in March, 1995, as a Nurse Managed, full service mental health agency. Certified by the Ohio Department of Mental Health, HRC serves homeless and indigent mentally ill clients in urban Cincinnati through the provision of mental health, substance abuse, and social services, on a sliding fee scale beginning at no cost to clients with no or very low income. In 2006 the agency became accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) and certified by the Ohio Department of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Services (ODADAS). Additionally, the agency serves as a multidisciplinary training site for graduate students in nursing, counseling, social work, and medicine from a variety of universities.
Since its inception HRC has strived to serve "the most difficult of the hard to serve" - those clients who have difficulty navigating the complexity of traditional health care environments or who have difficulty complying with the requirements imposed by regulatory agencies and treatment programs. Although many persons come to the clinic specifically for one service, they are often in need of multiple health care services and help accessing prescription assistance programs. Referrals are accepted from other mental health agencies, the Homeless Coalition Network, the Cincinnati Health Network, area hospitals, associated clinics and affiliates, and other Over-the-Rhine collaborators as well as self referrals. HRC is funded by grants, donations, and contracts with local, state, and federal agencies.
The Health Resource Center of Cincinnati, Inc. arose from the need to connect a specific "hard to serve" population who were rotating through the Psychiatric Emergency Service at University Hospital. to easy-to-access health care services that would be available for long-term support. The goal was to provide immediate service in the neighborhood where clients lived and to encourage ongoing case management.
In early 1995, the FreeStore/FoodBank agreed to provide the HRC with space in which to establish its clinic. This became a win/win situation as many clients utilized the services of both agencies. Nurses in Advanced Practice (NIAP), a faculty practice plan of the University of Cincinnati (UC) College of Nursing, provided the administrative arm and non-profit status. Then, in December 2000, HRC became independent of NIAP status, incorporating as a 501(c)3non-profit agency with a board of trustees and an independent governance structure. HRC maintains an association with the UC College of Nursing through its founder and president, Dr. Connie Wilson, who is a UC Emeritus Professor of Psychiatric Nursing. A member of the UC nursing faculty has participated on the HRC Board since 2000.
Throughout its life as an agency, HRC enjoyed a collaborative relationship with IKRON, a psychosocial rehabilitation center also located in Over-The-Rhine. In 2010, HRC moved into newly refurbished offices in the IKRON building. This cost-saving move advanced the opportunities for HRC and IKRON to collaborate in providing even more comprehensive care for Cincinnati's indigent and homeless men and women. The move has allowed HRC and IKRON's to grow their collaborative relationship. IKRON/HRC now share a joint contract with the Hamilton County Mental Health and Recovery Services Board (HCMHRSB) and are also jointly accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Recovery Services (CARF). Most importantly, clients can now easily avail themselves of the services offered by either agency.
In December, 2015, after 20 years of service to the agency, HRC's Founder, President, and CEO, Dr. Connie Wilson and HRC's COO, Dr. F. Robert Wilson retired from their respective administrative duties. IKRON's Executive Director, Randy Strunk, agreed to step in as HRC's administrator. Working in collaboration with the HRC Board, Mr. Strunk developed a plan to increase revenue generation to provide a sustainable salary line to support hiring a permanent agency administrator for HRC. During this time of transition, HRC will consider new programs and services to more fully meet the needs of the homeless, indigent, and low income residents of Over-The-Rhine, Cincinnati, and Hamilton County.