Cynthia is a Nurse Practitioner who has worked at The Mission’s health clinic since 2011, with a one year pause to obtain her PhD in Nursing. In addition to the clinic, she also provides care to vulnerable community members at other shelters, within people’s homes, and, as part of the response to COVID-19, in the assessment van where she tests patients. “Some clients can’t come to the clinic so we go to them.” Cynthia calls this approach “healthcare without walls”. “I appreciate the flexibility to meet people where they’re at and get them the care they need.” Cynthia also connects care providers and vulnerable patients through virtual care online.
It means a lot to Cynthia to earn trust and break down barriers to care for people who are homeless or insecurely housed, and help them overcome impediments to obtaining healthcare which include physical or mental illness and past negative experiences with the healthcare system. “Some people fear homelessness or people who have addictions. When you get to know them, you come to understand they’re the same as we are: human beings.”