What They’re Watching: Nina Abubakari, Advantage Health Centers


Patrick Jones


Nina Abubakari, President and CEO of Advantage Health Centers in Detroit, said they use an integrated model for primary care, dental care, behavioral health care, and more to treat underserved people in cost-effective fashion. 

At our 2022 Michigan State of Reform Health Policy Conference, Abubakari discussed her integrated work at Advantage Health Centers and their commitment to treating all the social determinants of health for their patients through the pandemic. 


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Abubakari said the pandemic exacerbated the impacts of stress and lack of access among their patients, but also affected staff through contracting the virus and workforce shortages. However, she said Advantage is pushing through and doing all they can to keep their community out of the emergency room. 

“It became much more difficult not only to take care of our patients, but also to make sure that our staff was capable,” Abubakari said. “However, we are in an environment where those challenges were not necessarily foreign. So, we are powering through the best that we can. We know that … if we were not there, a lot of the patients in our communities would not get any care. They would be storming to the emergency rooms in higher droves than they already are.”