Over the past year, Hope Pregnancy Centers of Brazos Valley, a non-profit corporation, has carefully evaluated the health related offerings in the community. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, young people aged 15 to 24 years acquire nearly half of all new sexually transmitted diseases. Compared with older adults, sexually active adolescents aged 15 to 19 years and young adults aged 20 to 24 years are at higher risk of acquiring STDs for a combination of behavioral, biological, and cultural reasons. The higher prevalence of STDs among adolescents reflect multiple barriers to accessing quality STD prevention services, including lack of health insurance or ability to pay, lack of transportation, discomfort with facilities and services designed for adults, and concerns about confidentiality.
High school and college students are most at risk yet least likely to take the steps necessary to do something about it. Their schedules do not fit well with most clinics. They won’t make an appointment with a local physician because the payment process includes their parent’s health insurance. Finally, community clinics have eligibility requirements, which can be overwhelming for those with no experience with the process.
STD testing and treatment is a natural fit for pregnancy medical centers like HPCBV. As such, Hope Pregnancy Centers has announced the purchase of the building located at 4112 E. 29th Street in Bryan. The Bryan building will add 6,000 square feet to HPCBV’s existing center of 4,200 square feet located at 205 Brentwood Drive in College Station.
Tracy Frank, Executive Director for HPCBV explains the reason for purchase, “For us, there were two compelling reasons. The first is the ability to deliver additional needed STD testing and treatment services in a building specifically designed as a medical center. Since we initiated this project, Drs. Noreen Johnson and Haywood Robinson of Brazos Medical Associates have agreed to partner with us as on site medical volunteers. Dr. Quartemont, owner of EZLabs (a necessary component for a STD clinic) has also agreed to co-locate his business with us. Both partnerships greatly expand the possibilities. Second, our Brentwood Drive location is reaching capacity. With our current service offerings, we will see approximately 1,800 unique individuals in 2014. Our little lobby and parking lot are often filled to capacity with pregnancy test and ultrasound clients, class attendees and those using their mommy points to buy diapers or baby supplies. Expanding our services at our current location was not an option.”
Hope Pregnancy Center is accepting and seeking donations for the start-up and remodeling costs, and to retire a small amount of short-term debt that was acquired to complete the purchase. For more information on Hope Pregnancy Center of the Brazos Valley, including the expansion, visit www.hopepregnancy.org.