April 30, 2021
Nampa, ID: The legacy of Terry Reilly Health Services began and grew in the living room of a modest home in a North Nampa neighborhood. Terry Reilly was originally sent by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Boise to help provide services to the area’s large seasonal farmworker population, but took this mission far beyond expectation. The living conditions of those he served caught his attention in a way that changed healthcare in the Treasure Valley forever.
Working out of their own home affectionately called the “Gente House” (House of the People), Terry and his wife, Rosie, started a neighborhood center offering tutoring for the children of seasonal farmworkers. As he began noticing the critical health needs of these farmworker families, Terry convinced a local pediatrician, Dr. Clarence McIntyre, to volunteer his services. Together, they opened a clinic in the back of Gente House on May 1st, 1971 – 50 years ago.
This clinic, along with the advocacy of Terry, Rosie, and Dr. McIntyre, brought awareness to local, regional, and national leaders the disparities of the medically underserved population in Southwest Idaho. As they showed the need for a clinic of this kind, they were able to gather resources to launch Community Health Clinics, Inc. as a not-for-profit corporation and opened their first clinic outside of the Gente House in a repurposed Nampa grocery store. Soon Dr. Bob LeBow joined the team as the organization’s first Medical Director – a position he held for nearly thirty-years.
When Terry Reilly tragically died in a 1986 plane crash while campaigning to become Idaho’s Lieutenant Governor, staff made the decision for the clinic system to adopt the name “Terry Reilly Health Services” in honor of its founder. Since then the organization has grown rapidly, evolving to best serve low-income and uninsured individuals across the Treasure Valley. Today Terry Reilly operates integrated medical, dental, and behavioral health clinics, including pharmacy services, all across the Treasure Valley. The innovative strategies that encouraged the organization’s inception is still the heartbeat of Terry Reilly’s operations as we partner with community leaders to create innovative solutions to prevalent challenges such as homelessness, drug addiction, food insecurity, and suicide rates.
Even with rapid expansion to meet the needs of the Treasure Valley, the mission of Terry Reilly remains the same – providing medical, dental, behavioral health, and pharmacy services to everyone for the purpose of creating a healthy, thriving community.