Oklahoma’s largest community health center, Variety Care, will be embarking on a multi-phased development project in a distressed part of Oklahoma City, known as “Old Britton”- one of the highest areas of poverty in Oklahoma County.  A collaboration between REI Oklahoma’s REI Development Corp., U.S. Bank, New Markets Redevelopment, LLC, BancFirst and Variety Care facilitated financing for the project utilizing the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program.  Totaling more than $15 million, Phase I will provide women’s health, prenatal care, postpartum care, pediatric/adolescent care, integrated early childhood development, Teen Tot clinic, parental and marital counseling.  At completion, the health center will have capacity to serve 20,000 new patients.  In addition, the campus will provide job opportunities and training to neighborhood residents in the area of clerical, reception, support staff and allied health.  90 permanent, high-quality jobs will be introduced into Oklahoma’s job market, plus an estimated 100 construction jobs.  

“Without the infusion of capital from the NMTC program, the facility would have been much smaller than demand requires, or not at all,” said Lou Carmichael, CEO Variety Care and Executive Director Variety Care Foundation.  “With the level of support from local and federal funds combined with the NMTC program, we will be able to increase access to health care, provide workforce development and invest in a distressed neighborhood.  We are grateful to all of the partners, from the Health Resources Service Administration, to the city of Oklahoma City and the team of financiers, who came together to make this project possible.” 

The newly constructed 35,000 sq. ft. health center will serve this low income, medically underserved area.  The expectation and estimates show that about 90% of the people served (newborns, children, youth, teens and pregnant women) will live in households at or below poverty.  Demand for pediatric and obstetrics for Medicaid patients is high in this area and although there are many providers in the area, most have limited panels for Medicaid.   This health center will be the 17th full-time site operated by Variety Care. 

“The NMTC program is all about revitalizing and improving communities,” said Scott Dewald, REI Oklahoma President & CEO.  “With every New Markets Tax Credit transaction our organization completes, the impact reaches well beyond the actual project, making it a win-win for both the business and its surrounding neighborhood.”

Since receiving its first federally-funded NMTC allocation, REI Oklahoma has counteracted disinvestment in the state’s communities amounting to total projects of more than $905 million, affecting more than 3,300 jobs.  The tax credits are provided by the U.S. Treasury Department's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund and provide a 39 percent federal income tax credit for investments into qualifying businesses in low income communities.

The expansion of prosperity among Oklahoma’s healthcare facilities has become a forte of REI Oklahoma’s NMTC program with other past healthcare-related projects in Muskogee, Stigler, Tahlequah, Wetumka, Tulsa and Oklahoma City.  Additional projects have included the restoration and repurposing of various historical Oklahoma buildings and assistance to industrial production industries. 

REI Oklahoma welcomes the opportunity to discuss the feasibility of potential NMTC-related financing projects.  Call 800-658-2823 to arrange a meeting.


A non-profit economic development firm, REI Oklahoma offers services statewide.  REI Business Lending collaborates closely with local lenders to help entrepreneurs navigate through business lending resources and programs.  For women-owned businesses and minority-owned enterprises, REI Women’s Business Center and REI Native American Business Centers offer unique training, as well as technical assistance and access to capital.  REI Down Payment Assistance provides support to potential homeowners.  Additionally, business space is made available through the organization’s commercial facilities program.  REI Oklahoma leverages the New Markets Tax Credit program to attract new investments into Oklahoma and create needed jobs in underserved communities.  Learn more about the organization at  Follow REI Oklahoma on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.  


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, November 28, 2016


For More Information Contact:  Robyn Coventon, Variety Care (405) 635-5694


Variety Care Names 2016 Bertha Levy Health Care Advocate Award Recipient


(November 28, Oklahoma City) – Tomorrow evening, Tuesday, November 29, the annual Variety Care Diamond Donor Event will be held at the Quail Creek Golf and Country Club.  Variety Care Foundation Board Chair Ann Dagg will present the Kirkpatrick Family Fund with the 10th annual 2016 Bertha Levy Health Care Advocate award.  The Kirkpatrick Family Fund has been selected for this honor to publicly recognize their ongoing support of and commitment to reducing the rates of teen pregnancy in Oklahoma County. 



“This year's event is especially meaningful because it is the 10th anniversary of the Bertha Levy Award as well as the 10th year of our partnership with KFF,” said Lou Carmichael, CEO of Variety Care.  “Without the philanthropic giving and the vision for a greater Oklahoma that our friends at the Kirkpatrick Family Fund have, Variety Care could not provide the services we do for so many adolescents in Oklahoma. We are grateful to the support we receive from the Kirkpatrick Family Fund that allows us to make such an impact on the lives of so many young people.”  


            In addition to their commitment to adolescent health, the Kirkpatrick Family Fund has made an indelible mark on the Oklahoma landscape through their continuing backing of healthy family initiatives, educational programs for lower income families, the Oklahoma Arts Council, improved quality of life via enhanced and protected built environments, the Homeless Alliance and community led arts and humanities programs. 


The Diamond Donor event is an annual expression of gratitude for those donors who have given $1,000 or more in the last year to Variety Care.  The Bertha Levy Health Care Advocate award is in honor of Bertha Levy, M.D., who died in 2007 at age 92. Past recipients include Sarkeys Foundation, Cassie Bowen, Kim Henry, Dr. Jay Johnston, Dr. Robert Mannel, Sally Bentley, Mike Fogarty, Good Shepherd Dental Clinic, and Mike Dover.


About Variety Care ( Variety Care is Oklahoma’s largest community health center with sixteen health care facilities in central, south and western Oklahoma. In 2015, we provided comprehensive and coordinated medical, dental, behavioral health, vision, and social services to 96,582 individuals through 287,644 encounters.  A United Way partner agency, Variety Care serves patients with insurance and without insurance and strives to make health care affordable and accessible for all patients.  The Variety Care Foundation provides philanthropic support and community awareness for Variety Care and its efforts.



The entire family can access affordable care at Variety Care.  A United Way partner agency, Variety Care serves patients with insurance and without insurance and strives to make quality  health care affordable and accessible for all patients. 


By Kyle Stewart, MD


Dr. Stewart with Teen Parent Family

To say that Oklahoma has a teen pregnancy problem is a vast understatement. Oklahoma has the second highest teen birth rate in the U.S., nearly twice the national rate. Nearly one in five teen births is a repeat birth. This is critical; with one child, a teen parent can still go on to finish high school, possibly go on to college and enter the workforce. In my experience, a second child tips the scales and makes it nearly impossible for that teen parent to meet education and employment goals. It doesn’t make sense to me that we’d be willing to settle on being the second worst state in the nation in this regard. This doesn’t reflect the greatness of the Oklahoma I know. [Click here to read the full article at the Oklahoma Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics Website]


In order to continue to serve our valued patients with quality care, some nominal fees will increase effective November 15, 2015. For more information, please ask a receptionist.


We believe our very own staff and medical team are every day heroes in our very own community, and we would like to invite you to celebrate with us National Health Center Week.

Our event is Saturday, August 15th from 10am-2pm at our Straka Terrace Family Health Center, 1025 Straka Terrace.

We will have fun and free activities for the entire family to enjoy.

Activities include:

  • Face Painter
  • Balloon Animals
  • Community Resource Fair
  • Greet and meet with the Ice Queen
  • Greet and meet superheroes
  • Dental screening for children
  • Blood pressure and Glucose readings for adults
  • Please bring unused and expired medication for safe disposal
  • Games, prizes and more!

Don't miss out on this wonderful community event.

A special thanks to our community supporters.




Help our uninsured patients on Tuesday, August 11th by eating at the new S&B's Burger Joints in Midwest City!S&B Burger Joint Pay It Forward


OKLAHOMA CITY —Two Variety Care doctors have received statewide and regional awards for their commitment to effective and innovative patient care.

The American Academy of Pediatrics’ south-central district announced in late June that it is recognizing Dr. Kyle Stewart with a Special Achievement Award for his leadership on Variety Care’s Teen-Tot program.  The program focuses on improving clinical care for teenage parents and their children while working to prevent future unexpected pregnancies.

"I am honored that the AAP is recognizing the progress we are seeing with teen parents in Oklahoma City, but there is so much left to be done,” Dr. Stewart said.  “We have one of the highest teen birth rates in the developed world, which means we not only need more robust teen pregnancy prevention, but we also have an amazing opportunity to serve teen parents and their children today.”

Also in June, Dr. Shadi Edalati was named 2015 Partner of the Year by the Oklahoma Academy of Family Physicians.

“I have been involved with the Oklahoma Academy of Family Physicians since residency,” said Dr. Edalati, who has served on the organization’s patient advocacy and legislative committees. “As a family physician, I take pride in the ability to take care of pregnant women, children and sick adults confidently.  It is exhilarating, even though occasionally exhausting, to get to know my patients in the context of their family, psychosocial and economic settings in order to deliver care that is evidence-based, yet individualized and patient-centered.”

Stewart practices pediatrics at Variety Care’s Straka Family Health Center in south Oklahoma City, and Edalati practices family medicine at Variety Care’s Northwest 10th Street Health Center.

Variety Care and its providers focus on making quality health care affordable and accessible.  Patients with almost all insurances can be seen at Variety Care, and uninsured patients can access care along on a sliding-fee scale based on income and family size.  Appointments can be made by calling (405) 632-6688.

About Variety Care: (

Variety Care is a non-profit community health center with locations in Oklahoma City, Norman, Del City, Fort Cobb, Grandfield and Thomas.  Variety Care saw more than 78,000 people in 2014, providing primary medical, dental, vision and behavioral health care with multiple services at some sites.  A United Way partner agency, Variety Care serves patients with insurance and without insurance and strives to make health care affordable and accessible for all patients.  The Variety Care Foundation provides philanthropic support and community awareness for Variety Care and its efforts.