Gateway Healthcare in Midland, Michigan provides holistic approach to medical visits


A new non-profit healthcare provider in Midland is offering holistic care to patients.

Prior to the opening, Gateway Healthcare Directors Ed Doerner and Jim Mier met with MyMichigan Health to discuss how to help the Asset Limited Income Constrained Employed (ALICE) population and those struggling with finances .

“Gateway (Healthcare) is not only a gateway to the rescue, but also a gateway to quality healthcare for people who just can’t get it because they don’t find it affordable,” Mier said.

Since opening on July 5, Gateway Healthcare has attended to 275 patient visits with physical, spiritual and financial needs.

Located at 600 Cambridge St., Suite 1 in Midland, the office building welcomes patients with a lounge area – with free drinks and snacks – a private office area, three exam rooms and a laboratory. The office also offers tests for COVID-19, RSV, strep and TB.

Gateway Healthcare serves four categories: Eligible Insured, Eligible Uninsured, Unqualified Insured, and Unqualified Uninsured. A qualified person is someone in the ALICE population, while an unqualified person earns above the cost of living – $65,000 for a four-person household. Gateway Healthcare uses Medicaid rates for qualified individuals and Medicare rates for non-qualified individuals.

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Doerner explained he feels driven to help people after speaking to some customers at The Bridge Food Center. Doerner was struck when a customer said how he had to choose between buying groceries and seeking medical care.

“It gives doctors the ability to just care about people and not care about what they’re told to do (by insurance companies),” Doerner said. “They come to what is right and give the care they need.”

Regardless of the patient’s financial background, Gateway Healthcare’s maximum deductible for a medical exam, including testing, is $40.

“Anyone who is qualified only pays for the services they receive,” says Doerner. “You pay for nothing else. It will become affordable.”

In addition to physical health, Gateway Healthcare addresses people’s interpersonal, physical, mental, occupational and nutritional health.

When first-time patients enter the gateway, they are greeted at reception before meeting with office manager and medical assistant Adrienne Schmitt. Schmitt explains Gateway Healthcare’s role, what services it offers and sees where the patient falls into the four categories. In addition to a general health form, patients receive a questionnaire about their mental health, food security, transportation, faith and prayer life.

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Schmitt will also ask the patient if he is comfortable with the doctor praying with him during his visit. Gateway Healthcare is based on Christian values ​​but is aimed at all people, regardless of their faith.

“Of all the ministries we do, we bring Jesus in the most, but we don’t throw it in our face,” Meier said. “It is important to us to bring Jesus into the healing process. It doesn’t have to be important to them.”

If a patient indicates on their form that they are food insecure, Gateway Healthcare will provide The Bridge Food Center with a gift card. Gateway Healthcare directs people to other resources, including His Hands Auto Care. More community resources are coming in, Schmitt said.

“We can send you home with a prescription, but if you don’t have access to nutritious food, it doesn’t do you much good,” Schmitt said. “We want to make sure that when patients leave us, they receive the best possible care.”

At the end of the visit, patients have the opportunity to anonymously report on their experiences. The Board reviews the surveys each month to improve operations.

“Almost every single patient that has walked through our door since we opened has been very genuine,” Schmitt said. “They really understand where we’re coming from and they were very encouraging and very good with their advice which was helpful.”

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In addition to community donors, Gateway Healthcare patients donated a total of $1,000, according to Mier. One patient agreed to pay recurring monthly donations of $70.

“Midland has been extremely generous,” Schmitt said. “There are many kind-hearted people out there. Even if it doesn’t benefit them, they are still willing to get involved and help.”

Schmitt, who has worked with various health departments over the years, said Gateway Healthcare encourages a different type of healthcare environment than she’s seen in the past. As she works there, she is reminded of why she chose a career in healthcare: to help people.

“When you come here, you are enveloped in care, in real care.” Dörner adds.

Gateway Healthcare is hosting an open house in conjunction with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, September 30th. The opening ceremony will take place at 12:30 p.m

To learn more about Gateway Healthcare or to schedule an appointment, visit gwhealthcare.net or call 989-259-1000.



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