First Choice Healthcare adds to services in Kewanee Mental Health services now available locally

Beth Welbers
Geneseo Republic
Monday Ogbeibor and Ali Brown stand in front of the listing of services available at the Clinic offices at 110 N. Burr St. in Kewanee.

First Choice Healthcare in Kewanee has welcomed the addition of Monday Ogbeibor and Ali Brown to the services they currently have available to area residents. Behavioral and Psychiatric care are the latest in a lengthy list of services, making the First Choice Healthcare offices a one-stop facility for healthcare. 

The addition of the mental health services now makes First Choice a comprehensive facility for all kinds of health related services in the area.  Raeann Tucker, director of Health Promotion, emphasizes the confidentiality factor in their "integrated healthcare model".  "You can make an appointment for a specific service, and there is no way anyone can tell what you are there for.  It may be speaking to one of our professionals about an anxiety issue, or you might be here for a sore throat. It is very confidential. "

Monday Ogbeibor is a Psychiatric Mental Health nurse practitioner.  He began his career as a Psychiatric Technician at an inpatient mental health facility in Michigan.  From there he accepted a position as an RN in inpatient mental health at the US Department of Veteran Affairs, working with veterans for more than four years.  He then went on to get his Masters of Science in Nursing from Wayne State University, and has been providing preventative and psychiatric care to clients of all ages. 

Ali Brown is a native Kewaneean, and is a Qualified Mental Health Professional, she is continuing to add to her list of  skills by working on licensure as a Licensed Professional Counselor. She received her Bachelor of Science from St. Ambrose University, and her masters in Clinical Psychology at Roosevelt University.  Brown completed her practicum at Hartgrove Behavioral Health Hospital in Chicago.  She then accepted a position with North Central Behavioral Health, who partners with First Choice Healthcare.  She has been working out of the Kewanee facility for about a year.  

Ogbeibor treats patients from eight on up.  He addresses mental issues like PTSD, ADHD, bi-polar and anxiety.  He also can help with addictions like drug, alcohol and smoking by prescribing medications to address cravings.  

"The most fulfilling part of my role is the ability to make a difference, listening to my patients talk about their struggles and being able to find a solution to help.  I love being able to hear "now that I have talked to you, I feel so much better!' It is amazing to be able to make a difference in people's lives." said Ogbeibor.

Brown spoke about treating not only the issues, but the behavioral underlying causes for problems. She helps patients identify underlying issues and teaches them to cope with and overcome the problems. "Being a therapist means being able to provide consistence and stability while they navigate the hard stuff. " stated Brown. 

Some of Brown's caseload are children.  She is trained to work with them in the event of emotional needs, behavioral problems, trauma, grief and loss, major life changes, strained relationships, or just feel they need to speak with someone. 

Part of the one-stop shop model is that if a problem has its root in a medical concern, a referral to a medical professional is speedy, seamless and private.  First Choice has two nurse practitioners on staff in Kewanee.

First Choice opened at the 110 N. Burr St. address in Kewanee in April of 2020.  Tucker feels that the more centralized location can help local residents needing care, since it helps address the transportation barrier that the previous location had.  It is close to schools and senior housing. 

Henry County Public Transportation can be utilized for those who have no access to a car.  Tele-Psych is available for qualifying situations.  Medicare and Medicaid are accepted. Walk ins are welcome. First Choice Helathcare can be reached at 309-852-5272.