Harvey County Commissioners approved a preliminary lease agreement with Prairie View for medical office space in the Newton Professional Building, the proposed future home of the Harvey County Health Department.

Prairie View purchased the building at 215 S. Pine St. in Newton, and the organization plans to renovate the building and have both the Harvey County Health Department and Health Ministries locate offices and offer services in the building. Certain Prairie View Community Mental Health Center services also will be offered in the building.

The centralized location is part of the organizations’ efforts to collaborate on offering health care to community members. Officials said the goal of the collaboration is to make health-care services for both prevention and treatment easier to access, and to reduce redundancies between the three providers.

“I’m really excited about this,” commission chair Marge Roberson said. “I think this is going to be an incredibly wonderful thing for the citizens of Harvey County.”

About the organizations

The Harvey County Health Department offers services such as health education, immunizations, emergency preparedness and a maternal and infant program.

Prairie View is a faith-based, private behavioral and mental health services provider which offers behavioral and psychiatric services for children, adolescents, adults and older adults, as well as consultation services to businesses and organizations.

Health Ministries Clinic provides medical, dental and counseling services for the insured and uninsured in Harvey, Marion, McPherson and Butler counties, regardless of patients’ ability to pay.

About the lease

The Harvey County Health Department, which currently is at 316 Oak St. in Newton, would have about 6,000 square feet of space to use in the medical office complex. Officials hoped the increased amount of room from the health department’s current location would make the department feel less cramped.

“We would be looking at more space,” said John Waltner, county administrator.

The amount of rent the county would pay for the space has yet to be determined.