MECCA – Residents of the unincorporated communities of the eastern Coachella Valley once again have a local pharmacy to improve their health and well-being with Clinicas de Salud del Pueblo’s (Clinicas) Mecca Pharmacy, which opened for business on Friday.

Mecca Clinicas and Supervisor V. Manuel Perez welcome community members to celebrate the official ribbon cutting for the Mecca Pharmacy, which is scheduled for 10 a.m. Wednesday, June 20.

“The opening of the Mecca Pharmacy marks an important milestone for Clinicas de Salud del Pueblo,” Yvonne Bell, President & CEO of Clinicas said in a prepared statement. “We are well aware of the significant needs and growth within the eastern Coachella Valley and its surrounding areas. This pharmacy allows Clinicas to continue to be responsive to the needs of our communities in which we serve.”

The pharmacy is located within the Mecca Family & Farmworker Service Center, a facility built and owned by Riverside County, at 91-275 Avenue 66 in Mecca.

A pharmacy business previously leased space in the center before closing in May 2017. It was the only pharmacy in the unincorporated areas of the eastern Coachella Valley, a rural disadvantaged and medically underserved area with extreme need.

Perez worked with the Riverside County Economic Development Agency to pursue a replacement pharmacy at the center. The county agreed to a lease with Clinicas, which was aided by a grant awarded through the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development to purchase equipment.

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(Photo courtesy of V. Manuel Perez)

“The re-establishment of a pharmacy in Mecca is very beneficial and valuable for the community,” Perez said in a prepared statement. “Residents of the eastern Coachella Valley, especially those with limited or no transportation, have a great need for health services near their homes. Clinicas has played a vital role in improving the health status of local farmworkers and service workers with community-based services. I appreciate Clinicas’ efforts to get a pharmacy up and running again at this center.”

Clinicas plans to fill approximately 300 prescriptions per day at the 1,485-square-foot pharmacy. The pharmacy’s hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Clinicas is a federally qualified health center with 48 years of experience serving Imperial and Riverside counties. Clinicas currently operates 11 health centers in some of the most diverse and highest poverty communities in the nation.

Perez represents the eastern two-thirds of Riverside County on the Riverside County Board of Supervisors. Stretching from Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs, south to the Salton Sea and east to Blythe and the Colorado River, the 4th District is the largest geographical district in the county.

Supervisor Perez’s office hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.