Cleveland doctors offer free health care - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/26/09

Cleveland doctors offer free health care

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By Cassie Hataway | email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - To fight the high price of health care, in Cleveland volunteers are taking action by offering a free health clinic to the uninsured and underinsured.  Hundreds of people signed up to receive medical, dental, and vision services at no cost during the two-day clinic. 

The program is called Medworks.  "Medworks is a bridge to nationalized healthcare it's a way of making sure our most needy get seen.  We can't wait for a national healthcare policy to suddenly come available tomorrow, [because] it won't", says Dr. Jeff Ponsky, a University Hospital Medworks volunteer.  Medworks is a collaboration of all the medical community in Cleveland, Ohio. 

Health professionals volunteer their services for two days to those who need it most.  Uninsured patients filled empty rooms on the fifth floor of one hospital, a gymnasium was turned into a vision clinic, and dental professionals pulled bad teeth in a section of Case Western Reserve University Dental School.  "Whether you work for one hospital chain or a competing hospital medical practices dental practices what have you they're all coming together with one common goal, to help the people that need it", says Scott Alperine, DDS, a Medworks dental volunteer.  In two days volunteers signed up 1100 medical, 300 vision, and 300 dental patients.

This first test of the Medworks program was in Cleveland, but Dr. Ponsky and Dr. Alperine say they're hopeful that the program will catch on and spread to other cities across the country.

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