Do you remember working without the benefit of medical insurance? For 394,000 people in San Antonio that is still a reality. Since 2009 Faith Family Clinic has provided affordable medical care to the working uninsured families in San Antonio. Much of our support has come through the generous contributions of our medical professionals who have volunteered their time and skills to help hard working families who do not have medical insurance and thus rely on the emergency room for non-emergency medical care.
Our Annual Celebration and Volunteer Recognition on October 17th highlighted the efforts of Dilma C. Ruiz, MD and David W. Person, MD. Dr. Ruiz is a general surgeon and has provided exceptional medical services and performed procedures that our patients would otherwise not have received. Likewise, Dr. Person is a noted plastic surgeon working on the hand and wrist. Both of these have provided quality care for the working uninsured as they volunteered their time and talents with Faith Family Clinic.
The use of volunteers has allowed Faith Family Clinic to expand our medical services and keep our costs within reach of lower income families. Many medical professionals have become weary of the “business” of medicine. By choosing to volunteer at Faith Family Clinic, they return to their first love which is to care for people in an unhurried environment. The word medicine comes from the Latin meaning the art of healing. Faith Family Clinic puts the relationship back in the doctor-patient exchange and it is no longer about dollars and data but a serious inquiry into wellbeing and wholeness.
The Affordable Care Act is certainly a hot topic these days. However, health and wholeness cannot be relegated to the domain of the affluent. San Antonio has many small businesses that will struggle to provide medical benefits. There are also many part time employees (less than 30 hours per week) that will struggle to find insurance they can afford. While we are still in the first weeks of the Healthcare Exchange, we already see many of our patients seeking help in how to find the right kind of insurance for their family and one which they can afford.
We have implemented a program that we believe can provide gap coverage to those less expensive major medical policies that have a higher deductible. MemberCare is a membership approach to primary medical care. For a monthly fee of $50 a person or $100 a family, MemberCare will provide medical care in one of our clinics with no other costs. No co-pays for office visits and no cost for lab work, x-rays, physicals or other services we provide in the clinic.
Several insurance carriers are now working with us to recommend MemberCare for many clients that are considering a Bronze level high deductible policy. Now, lower paid employees can have quality primary care and never worry about spending $5,000 to $6,500 on their deductible before insurance ever kicks in. Since the Bronze plan will only cover 60% of medical expenses, there will be a lot of cost to absorb. However, with MemberCare your primary medical care is only $650 a year for one person or $1,200 a year for the family. Send us an email at email@example.com or check out our website at www.faithfamilyclinic.org for more information.
The uninsured in San Antonio will still be a sizeable population and that number is estimated at 30 million people nationally. Undocumented immigrants will not qualify and will continue to have medical needs that must be addressed. Other legal immigrants will seek affordable medical care and those who earn less than the poverty level (family of 4 earning less than $23,550) will not be eligible for a tax credit.
Charity clinics such as Faith Family Clinic are unique in that they do NOT receive government funding to provide medical care. Julie Darnell is the foremost authority on free and charitable clinics and has described these clinics as “gap fillers”. We are also distinguished because we are truly community supported.
To learn more about MemberCare or how we provide affordable medical care to low income working families, contact Jim Young at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 210-653-1511 x207.