Moore Free Care Clinic Plans Open House Tuesday
Moore Free Care Clinic is one of 74 free clinics taking part in a statewide open house sponsored by the North Carolina Association of Free Clinics (NCAFC).
The event, in partnership with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation, is an effort to educate the community about the health-care services free clinics provide to the uninsured and other vulnerable populations.
The doors will stay open late on Tuesday, April 29, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., to give community members, civic leaders and government officials the chance to tour the clinic's new 'bare bones' facility, ask questions and learn more about the critical health care needs being met by North Carolina's free clinics.
"One of our core values as a free clinic is that cost should not prevent people in our community from receiving health care," says Laura Tremper-Jones, executive director of Moore Free Care Clinic. "The services we provide are high-quality, and are having an immediate and direct impact on our community. Without the dedication of our staff and volunteers, some people would have nowhere else to turn for health care."
Free clinics are private, nonprofit, community-based organizations that provide health care access to North Carolinians through the use of volunteer health-care professionals and partnerships with other health-care providers. North Carolina's free clinics provide medical and dental care, as well as prescription medications for low-income, uninsured people in 79 counties.
During 2006, more than $67 million worth of health-care services were delivered at no charge to uninsured patients totaling more than 320,000 visits. The services were provided though the efforts of 7,800 volunteer health-care professionals and other community volunteers donating more than 259,000 hours of service.
"North Carolina's free clinics are bridging the gap in health care access for the uninsured," says Mike Darrow, executive director of the NCAFC. "We don't claim to be the only answer, but rather an important part of the solution to increasing access to health care for all North Carolinians."
The statewide open house coincides with national Cover the Uninsured Week activities, which are coordinated by the Robert Wood Johnson Foun-dation. North Carolina has the largest association of free clinics in the nation. According to the U.S. Census, in 2006, there were nearly 1.6 million uninsured in the state.
Moore Free Care Clinic opened its doors in April 2004 and has registered over 1,500 limited-income, uninsured pat-ients.
In 2007, the clinic provided $1.9 million in services and medications to its patients. In addition to providing primary and preventive medical care, mental health care and prescription medicines, the clinic offers several specialty clinics including: chronic disease management, cardiology, orthopedics, ophthalmology, physical therapy, ENT, neurology and dental care.
The clinic does not receive any state, federal or local funding and is dependent upon private sources for funding. Anyone interested in making a tax-deductible donation to the clinic can send it to: Moore Free Care Clinic, P.O. Box 161, Pinehurst, NC 28370. More information is available on the Web site at www.moorefreecare.org or by calling 947-6550.
The North Carolina Association of Free Clinics, founded in 1998, is a private, nonprofit, tax-exempt organization that conducts advocacy, research, public relations, resource development, training and technical assistance on behalf of its member free clinics and the people they serve.
Headquartered in Winston-Salem, the association is currently in the midst of a multiyear, multimillion dollar partnership with the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation to expand and strengthen the free health clinic network across the state.
Claudia Watson is a Pinehurst freelance writer and may be reached at email@example.com. com.
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