Page 6 - Heart of Hoag December 2016
P. 6

Brenda Garro Loves Helping People – and She Makes Special Trips Every Day to Prove It
‘Traveling care’ program is designed to help as many people as possible throughout Orange County who don’t have the means to help themselves.
The Melinda Hoag Smith Center for Healthy Living serves a large and growing number of underserved Spanish-speaking residents. Many of them lack the  nancial resources to pay for much-needed health care services, including those affecting their mental health.
And untreated mental health issues are a key concern of health care of cials in Orange County.
Stepping into this void is Brenda L. Garro, M.D.,
a physician who also happens to be board-certi ed in psychiatry – and bilingual. Just as important, Dr. Garro is kind and compassionate, and has committed her life and career to providing outstanding mental health services to residents who can least afford them.
“No members of our community should be denied quality mental health care and counseling because of their  nancial situation,” says Dr. Garro. “I’ve always been fascinated with psychiatry and issues affecting mental health.” Her extensive medical and psychiatric training and practice includes tenures in New York, and
for the past several years, Orange County.
The Center is an ideal location for working with patients, she says, because of its many outstanding onsite programs and services.
“I can also help my patients take advantage of the wonderful classes offered at the Center, like parenting classes, yoga and others,”
Dr. Garro says.
Her services are available at the Melinda Hoag Smith Center for Healthy Living through an arrangement with St. Joseph Heritage Healthcare. This arrangement came as the result of a regional Community Bene t project in which St. Joseph, St. Jude, Mission and Hoag provide funding to cover the cost of Dr. Garro’s salary. In return, each of the hospital’s Community Bene t programs has access to Dr. Garro’s services.
Dr. Garro is currently working with patients at  ve different sites throughout Orange County, including the Melinda Hoag Smith Center for Healthy Living. The other four sites are
St. Jude Neighborhood Clinic in Fullerton;
La Amistad Family Health Center in Orange; SOC Family Resource Center in Lake Forest; and CHEC Family Resource Center in San Juan Capistrano.
“Our ‘traveling care’ program was designed to help as many people as possible, particularly those who don’t have the means to help themselves. What I love most about the arrangement is that it was created with the best interests of the community at heart,” says
Dr. Garro. “We are trying to address mental health issues before they escalate and end up in the ER. There is a severe shortage of mental health beds in Orange County, and our goal is to proactively reach out to those who need help.”
Dr. Garro says she is impressed by Hoag’s strong and comprehensive focus on mental health services, citing its onsite programs and Mental Health Center as models for effective, community-based care. This holistic approach to mental health care ensures that patients bene t from a tight-knit team, she says.
“Many of the people we serve have never seen a psychiatrist. There is a tremendous need for the care we’re providing them, and I’m so honored to work with Hoag and the other health care providers in this important effort.”
6 COMMUNITY IS THE HEART OF HOAG
Brenda Garro, M.D., is committed to providing quality mental health care services to those who have dif culty affording them.


































































































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