Valencia Mattison wanted to make a difference in the health of her community. She wanted a career that enabled her to further use her clinical skills to provide important education and programs that would help address the many health challenges that residents living in rural communities face today.
Mattison began her work in healthcare as a medical assistant for Dr. Allen Kolb at the Abbeville Area Physician Network Healthcare Center. During that time, she worked toward receiving her Master’s in Public Health (MPH) from Walden University.
“I strongly believe that healthcare is a human right and not a choice or an option,” stated Mattison. “I wanted a better understanding of how the community in which we live can so greatly affect our health behavior and outcomes.”
Mattison joined Abbeville Area Medical Center’s Community Health, Wellness and Outreach Department as Community Health Coordinator in February 2022.
In this role, Mattison is responsible for the management of a wide variety of public health programs that make the community a healthier place for residents to live. Some of her responsibilities include providing health education, assistance with worksite health events, coordination of health fairs, working with Chronic Care program patients, connecting people who need assistance with community services through the SC Thrive portal, working with the Best Chance Network and Clemson’s Mental Health Program that both serve the under and/or uninsured and assisting with the Be Well Abbeville Community Coalition.
“Valencia’s strong clinical background helps her understand the needs of our patients and how to ‘bridge the gaps’ in their healthcare using our programs and clinic staff,” said Amanda Morgan, MPA, AAMC Community Health, Wellness and Outreach Director. “She knows how to ‘connect the dots’ and ensure patients have what they need to live healthier lives.”
“As Community Health Coordinator, my goal is to develop and improve policies, implement preventive programs and provide health education,” stated Mattison. “However, my most important role is to advocate for minorities and low-socioeconomic status communities and show them that achieving better health is possible in spite of social and environmental disparities.”
If you are interested in learning more about the services provided by AAMC’s Community Health, Wellness and Outreach department or if you are in need of community resources, call (864) 366-9681.