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Fri June 28, 2013

Free Health Clinic Set For Next Week

More than a thousand people without health insurance are expected to attend a free one-day clinic in New Orleans next week. It’s the fourth visit to the city by a national nonprofit since Hurricane Katrina.

The National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics is sponsoring a one-day clinic Wednesday, July 3 at the Convention Center.

Spokeswoman Nicole Lamoureux says Louisiana residents are especially in need of medical care.

“Twenty-three percent of the people in Louisiana are uninsured," Lamoureaux says. "To put that in perspective, you’re looking at Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi — you guys are pretty much all at the bottom when it comes to health outcomes. You have some of the worst cases of diabetes, some of the worst cases of teen pregnancy, some of the worst cases of hypertension across the United States of America.”   

Based on exam results, patients may receive more services, including electrocardiograms, glucose testing for diabetes, kidney disease testing and mental health services.

Lamoureux says clinic staff and volunteers will also hook up residents with services available in their own communities.

“People don’t know where the medical care is for them. They can’t afford it. They’re working. They don’t have access to insurance, and they’re scared.  They don’t want to go the emergency room. And a lot of times we help people just identify what’s wrong with them, get them the medication they need, the help that they need so they don’t have to live in fear of this thing over their head all the time.” 

Appointments can be made by calling 1-800-340-1301, or by going on the website of the National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics.

The event runs Wednesday, July 3, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., but those who arrive at closing time without an appointment will still be seen by medical staff.

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