(Two Part Blog)
Our area hosted a free clinic this past week and before I say anything else, I want to take a moment to express how beautiful this event was. This was for vision, dental, and medical care. There were people from all walks, all races, and all professions, all talking to each other just as normal human beings. I had the pleasure of sitting with a lady who had come to have her oldest son’s and her own health checked out. His name was Kevin, he was an adult, and he had down syndrome. Every person I noticed spent a significant amount of time talking to both this mother and her son, although he was too shy to answer back mostly.
I can’t say as I blame him. There were A LOT of people there. It is not an experience I plan to repeat by myself ever again. My phone was my life line to not having a severe panic attack.
Despite the amount of people there, the wait times weren’t absolutely horrible, and the staff did everything they could to make the experience pleasurable. They brought around lunch, bottled water, and at one point there was singing and music from some of the youth who were volunteering.
Now, let me explain why I chose to attend this event. I do not have health insurance. My husband and I fall between the brackets. He makes too much as an EMT to qualify for Medicaid, but we don’t make enough to be able to afford private insurance. The lady I was talking with actually had insurance, but was unable to afford the deductible. So, we came, in droves I might add, to this three day free clinic.
I have severe asthma and allergies. I’ve had them my life, but growing up I was on my parents’ insurance. Did you know an inhaler costs 70 bucks? That is the rescue inhaler. Once I spoke with the primary care doctor I was sent away with a Symbicort inhaler ($330) as well as a nebulizer ($200-$400) and the medications for the nebulizer. They even offered to pray with me. It was an amazing experience watching these doctors, nurses, surgeons, etc volunteering their time.
A large part of the doctors I spoke with weren’t even from West Virginia, and yet they had donated time, provisions, etc to come here.
It was truly a blessing.