Two nonprofits partner to improve health care

Aug 06, 2014
Carolyn Pope meets with a client at Open Door.

The Good Samaritan Clinic and the Open Door are partnering to increase access to health care in Haywood County.

Last week the clinic visited with patrons of the Open Door during lunch.  Staff and volunteers triaged patients with existing medical problems and set up points of access within the county.

“We visited with a mix of patients who were uninsured, had Medicare, or Medicaid.” said Donda Bennett, GSC executive director.  “Our goal for the program is to assist anyone who doesn’t have a primary care provider, insured or not.”

For patients who are uninsured, they will go through a screening process and an appointment will be set up at the Good Samaritan Clinic.  Most of these patients will be established for primary care with GSC new provider, Chelsea Batten, PA-C. Patients who are insured and have not established with a provider will have the opportunity to work with an Open Door volunteer.

This volunteer will serve as an advocate with local primary care offices to set up the first appointment, assist with transportation, and follow up with the patient.Several adults were able to qualify with the Good Samaritan Clinic last week and have already been seen at the clinic.

“The timing was amazing.  We had a gentleman who was out of his insulin and GSC made a slot that same day.” said Perry Hines, Open Door executive director.

Carolyn Pope, a volunteer at the Open Door, will be heading up the program. Part of this will be training additional volunteers, contacting physician offices in the community, and working with GSC staff.

The next screening will be on Thursday, Aug. 28 at the Open Door from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m..

A GSC staff member and an Open Door volunteer will be onsite to triage patients and offer help.  The Open Door hopes to offer these services at least once a month.


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