While a healthy, flavorful meal was the main emphasis of a Wednesday Community Supper, the Plumas County Public Health Agency also had its relatively new health van on hand.
The van was purchased with special Ryan White grant funding about a year ago, said James Wilson, health education coordinator for the department.
While the Ryan White program is noted for its HIV/AIDS involvement, the van is equipped for a whole lot more, Wilson explained recently. “In the last year we’ve taken it out six times a month and have had 110 interactions through the program,” he said.
Services include HIV and Hepatitis C rapid testing and counseling, Wilson listed, as he showed off just what the van and its staff offer.
Supplies to help combat sexually transmitted diseases are available, along with additional counseling, syringe disposal and access to harm reduction tools and counseling.
The van is also stocked with wound care supplies and staff is prepared to make referrals to substance use disorder treatment, to social services programs and to behavioral health treatment.
“We plan to expand services to also include family planning and nursing services, along with limited dental services,” Wilson said.
The public health staff and the van cover a lot of territory. Besides covering Plumas County, the van travels to locations in Sierra, Lassen and Modoc counties. These are partner counties under the Ryan White program, Wilson explained.
“As part of the four-county Northern Sierra Opioid Safety coalition, we plan to expand harm reduction and HIV services to Sierra, Lassen and Modoc counties,” Wilson said.
And best of all, the services and information inside the van come at no cost to participants.
For more information on when and where the van will next appear, contact the Public Health Agency at 283-6337 or the clinic at 283-6330.