Mendocino Coast Clinics Public Relations

Mendocino Coast Clinics (MCC) is a non-profit, community-based health center in the small coastal town of Fort Bragg, where it has been serving the local community for more than 25 years. Sometimes, when an organization has been around for decades, people think they know all they need to know about them, when in fact, they only know a fraction of the services provided. This was the challenge at MCC. As a federally qualified health center, MCC provides medical, dental, and behavioral healthcare, as well as some specialty services including a teen clinic where young patients could receive contraceptives, an HIV clinic, a Suboxone clinic, and a family wellness center.

The public relations approach involved educating existing patients about previously unused services, reestablishing and deepening relationships with community partners, and providing health education via a monthly health column that doubled as a blog. The executive director was already a well-respected spokesperson on local healthcare, and as a Latina, was able to reach out to both English-speaking and Spanish-speaking communities to provide accurate and timely information, especially when the pandemic hit.

MCC is an accredited Patient-Centered Medical Home (PCMH) with a team-based approach that puts the patient at the center of the team. 


CLIENT TESTIMONIAL

Jendi revolutionized our website and our marketing plan. She and her team assessed what was working and what was not, and implemented effective strategies to elevate our online presence and our community presence in just a couple of months. Jendi and her staff are very responsive to our requests, and deliverables are always on time or early. We appreciate her knowledge of our community, her depth of expertise and experience, and most of all, her partnership. She is as invested in our mission and success as we are.

– Lucresha Renteria, Executive Director


 

CHALLENGE

Since its inception, MCC has expanded to meet the healthcare needs of its community; however, when we began working together, many patients simply knew the clinic for the service they used. Our goal was to reinforce MCC's position as the community's best option for health care, while also informing people of all its services. We also encouraged the community to donate to the health center, especially through the annual fundraiser.

SOLUTION

MCC cares for a wide variety of patients in both English and Spanish, including pregnant women, babies and children, teens, adults, and older adults. It also serves those who are insured and those who are not, those with permanent addresses and those who are homeless. To reach out to such a broad audience, we used many communication pathways. We created a new website and incorporated Google Translate. We updated and expanded radio advertising in English and Spanish, started a monthly newspaper column that doubled as a blog, and updated photos of the facilities and staff to better represent the depth and breadth of services. We wrote press releases about newsworthy events and reached out to community partners and we redesigned marketing materials using simple, direct, effective messaging, making it easy for potential patients to find contact information and better understand MCC's offerings.

RESULTS

As of August 2019, MCC had 77 patients above budget for the month and 200 more than August 2018.
.