Cherokee Health Systems

National Health Care for the Homeless Council

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Cherokee Health Systems

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The clinic located at 538 W. Fifth Avenue, or 5th Avenue Clinic, was established to educate and improve the health of the homeless, primarily in the Knoxville area, by eliminating barriers and increasing access to health care services regardless of insurance or ability to pay. The 5th Avenue Clinic provides direct, integrated primary care, preventive care, behavioral health care and case management services.

Through a network of collaborations with community partners, such as Knoxville Area Rescue Mission (KARM), Knox County Health Department, University of Tennessee School of Nursing and Carson-Newman University School of Nursing, the clinic can sustain its outreach programs. These programs include the Under the Bridge Program, Diabetic and Foot Care Clinic, Highways & By-Ways OUtreach and KARM-Launch Point Collaboration, to name a few.


The 5th Avenue Clinic is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 am-5:00 pm. During these hours, patients are able to access a broad range of services within an integrated care delivery model. The primary/behavioral health care team consists of nursing staff, primary care providers, a behavioral health consultant, patient navigator, medical care manager, a behavioral therapist and case manager. Outreach is provided to patients and potential patients through collaboration with multiple agencies as described in the above section.

The 5th Avenue Clinic provides education, shadowing and training for University of Tennessee’s Undergraduate RN program, Physician’s Assistants and Nurse Practitioners programs; South College’s School of Nursing and Carson-Newman University’s School of Nursing through in-home medical treatment in a supported housing program for recently housed individuals, outpatient care and both on and off-site outreach opportunities.

Services provided at this location include: 24-hour emergency on-call, asthma treatment, basic needs, behavioral and mental health care, primary health care, blood pressure monitoring, case management/social services, diabetes testing/care, electronic health records, influenza vaccinations, Hepatitis A&B inoculations, health/nutritional education, HIV/AIDS screening/education, housing placement, immunizations, lab, medication prescribing/management, medication dispensing, OB/GYN, outreach, physical examinations, referral to specialty care, shelter outreach, STD testing, street outreach, TB screening/education and tobacco cessation education and support.


Linkages include Volunteer Ministries, KARM and the Salvation Army for day services, dental care, meals, clothing, employment and housing. Referral linkages are to the Knoxville Area Project Access (KAPA), local physicians and hospitals for specialty and inpatient care.


Estimated homeless population: 1,928

Patients served: 1,000 patients first year, 2,600 patients after two years

General Info


Dennis S. Freeman

HCH Coordinator

Joel Hornberger

Medical Director

Parinda Khatri

UDS Number


Contact Info

Phone Number

(865) 525-2104




Physical Address

538 W Fifth Ave
Knoxville, TN 37917

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