Via Christi Health is again offering a day of free health care services this weekend to anyone in need.
Last year’s event at Fairmount Park drew about 200 patients. This year, organizers are expecting more than double that.
“Since this is our second time, we feel like we can expand and offer more," says Charity Clark, leader of the Medical Mission at Home program, which is putting on the event.
The Day of Free Health Care will offer services from medical care, dental care, and on-site prescription refills, to mental health services, spiritual care and health education — all at no cost.
Clark says the goal is to ease the barriers many people face that prevent them from getting adequate care.
“Cost, obviously, transportation, just health literacy," she says. "Even individuals with a college education, understanding the health care system is almost like a different language."
She said many people fall into a health care gap where they don't meet the age or income requirements for state-subsidized health care coverage, but can't afford private insurance on their own. As a result, they'll often put off seeking medical care until they're very ill.
"We want to help intervene with that," Clark says. "We want this to not just be a one-day event."
The Day of Free Health Care is at 9 a.m. on April 14 at Mueller Aerospace Magnet Elementary School.
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