South Texas Rural Health Service
South Texas Rural Health Service was founded in 1975 and began providing health services in 1976 to the people of LaSalle, Dimmitt, and Frio counties. This service area has been designated as a Medically Underserved Area and as a Health Professional Shortage Area. The clinic maintains five program/service delivery sites and provides services such as laboratory, pharmacy, radiology, dental, family planning, HIV/AIDS testing and counseling, health education, nutrition counseling, substance abuse counseling, and transportation assistance. About 85 miles south of San Antonio, Cotulla lies in the heart of the South Texas Plains, called the "Brush Country" because of the abundant blackbrush, mesquite, cat's claw and prickly pear. Great quail, turkey, wild boar and javelina hunting. Freshwater fishing for big largemouth bass, crappie and huge catfish in Choke Canyon Reservoir and Corpus Christi Lake.
FQHCs also know as community health centers are local, non-profit or public entity, community owned health care providers serving low-income and medially underserved communities. FQHCs provide high-quality, affordable primary care and preventative services to populations who, even if insured, remain isolated from traditional forms of medical care because of where they live, who they are, the language they speak, and their high levels of complex health care needs. Although FQHCs have a broad prevention-based perspective on many health problems, they are much like private medical and dental practices, staffed by physicians, dentists, nurses and other health care professionals.
They differ however, by the broader range of services provided such as social services, transportation, translation services, health education, and their management structure. In order to maximize limited resources, these private, nonprofit community practices have developed community linkages with specialty providers, local health departments, hospitals, nursing homes, pharmacists, and other community organizations to ensure services are coordinated and eliminate duplication of effort. Although some services may not be available on-site, the health center does coordinate care and referrals to other providers in a way that assures comprehensive and convenient "one-stop caring" for its patients. In 2004, Community Health Centers cared for 562,065 Texans regardless of their insurance status or ability to pay.