Remote Area Medical will provide a free medical clinic at Harlan County High School on Saturday and Sunday. The clinic will include free dental, vision and medical services to the community.
Harlan ARH Hospital is the host and sponsor of the project, which includes students from the University of Kentucky and University of Louisville schools of dentistry, along with doctors, nurses, optometrists and other professionals locally and from around the state.
“The dental service is cleanings, fillings and extractions,” said Harlan ARH Hospital Community and Patient Advocate Mark Bell. “They may be able to do more, but obviously it’s at the dentist’s or oral surgeon’s discretion. People will just have to be evaluated before anything can be done. The same thing with vision — eyes will be examined and if it’s prescription eye wear they need then they will be provided that before they leave.”
Bell said the medical portion of the clinic will primarily be screenings and general information.
“Generally, medical issues are ongoing things and a one-time clinic is not set up to handle that type of service,” said Bell.
Encouraging early arrival at the site, Bell said this will ensure a greater possibility of being seen. He said numbers will be distributed beginning at 3 a.m. to 3:30 a.m. in the Harlan County High School parking lot both days. Doors will open for the clinic to begin at 6 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. both days.
“The amount of numbers we give out will be based on the number of volunteers we have to provide services,” said Bell. “The more doctors, nurses, dentists and optometrists we get the more numbers we can treat. We can’t guarantee everyone will be seen or treated, but if they get a number they will be seen. Right now, we’re looking at being able to serve at least 1,000 people. If our number of volunteers increases we could serve more. If there are a lot of simple procedures we could add more people — if there are complicated situations it will slow things down.”
Bell said those who are driving to the clinic will need to arrive at the high school through the gate where the baseball fields are located. He said the public will need to park in the student and public parking lot keeping the other gate and parking closest to the school available for law enforcement, emergency management personnel and handicap access. He said there will be waiting periods and people will need to make preparations especially if they have small children — bringing something to entertain them with or snacks to keep them from being hungry.
“Transportation will be provided both days by Harlan County Community Action Agency,” said Bell. “The three designated areas they will transport from are at the main entrance at the Village Center Mall in Harlan, in the parking lot between the Evarts Post Office and Family Dollar and in Cumberland it will be at the entrance canopy at Cumberland Elementary School. Transportation will be provided to and from these designated areas. Buses will be running all throughout the day.”
For more information, you may visit www.ramusa.org or Bell at 573-8208.
Reach Nola Sizemore at 606-573-4510, ext.115, email@example.com