Free medical clinic to benefit from fundraiser lunch

Matthews free Clinic is located at 196 South Trade Street, Matthews, NC. They relo- cated to this larger space to meet the growing demand for healthcare for uninsured resi- dents of Mecklen- burg and Union Counties.

Matthews free Clinic is located at 196 South Trade Street, Matthews, NC. They relo- cated to this larger space to meet the growing demand for healthcare for uninsured resi- dents of Mecklen- burg and Union Counties.

Dunwells Custom Kitchen and Pour House will host a fundraising lunch on Wednesday, September 18 from 11 am to 3 pm at 7110 Brighton Park Drive in Mint Hill. The restaurant will donate 20 percent of all sales to the Matthews Free Medical Clinic, which serves uninsured patients from anywhere in Mecklenburg and Union Counties.

The clinic had very humble beginnings back in February 2004. Patients were seen one evening a week under the direction of

Lou Ann McAdams, MD, Medical Director, and Gail Dokes, RN, Executive Director. Operating costs for the clinic’s first year were donated by Matthews United Methodist Church along with individual donors.

In April 2013, the clinic relocated to a larger facility that has double the square footage. This move was necessary in order to meet the growing need in the community.

According to Matthews Free Medical Clinic Director Amy Carr, there were nearly 3000 patient visits and 701 individual patients in 2012, and the need does not appear to be waning.

“We receive over 100 requests, each week, from people inquiring on how to become a new patient,” says Carr.

Currently the clinic is staffed by two full-time employees: executive director, medical assistant and three part-time employees: RN, office manager and office support. All of the providers are volunteers as are many RN’s, medical  assistants, pharmacists and our office support.

“We could not operate without the hard work and dedication of our volunteer staff,” says Carr.

The clinic is in operation for residents of Mecklen-burg and Union Counties that have no insurance. Potential patients must complete an application, provide copies of support- ing documents.

“To become a patient, a person must live in Mecklenburg or Union County, be at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level, be uninsured and be between the ages of 12-64,” says Carr.

Once an applicant attends a screening and is approved, he will be scheduled for a new patient appointment. The doctor a new patient sees for the first time becomes his pri- mary care provider.

“Our providers can refer patients to any of the specialists that volunteer with the clinic and patients can schedule sick and follow-up appointments at any time after they are established,” says Carr.

Patients must recertify annually to show that they still meet the patient requirements.

The free clinic provides primary care, chronic disease care, physical therapy, orthopedic care, psychiatry, gynecology, chiropractic care, educational programs, lab services and nutritional counseling.

The Matthews Free Clinic is always looking for volunteer providers, RN’s and office support. As the volunteer base grows, so can the number of patients. Currently the clinic is look- ing for volunteers fluent in Russian.

Matthews Free Clinic is located at 196 South Trade Street, Matthews. For more information or to see how you can help, call 704-841-8882, or go to www.matthewshealthclinic .org. It is open Mon, Fri 8: 30 amto 1 pm and Tuesday through Thursday 8:30 am to 4 pm.

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