Virginia Free Clinics By The Numbers
Free and charitable clinics play an important role in safeguarding the underserved by providing comprehensive health care for those who would otherwise go without -- even during a public health crisis.
As healthcare disparities worsen, free and charitable clinics remain vital resources in the health care delivery system in Virginia and across the country. Serving as the safety net for hardworking working individuals and families that struggle to make ends meet, the free clinic of today is not simply an acute illness solution; it also is a medical home for individuals that present with multiple chronic conditions.
In the best of times, free clinics are poised and ready to address public health concerns via a holistic, comprehensive care model that is critical to reducing the gap in healthcare disparities in our communities.
During a significant public health crisis, like COVID-19 pandemic, free clinics were able to respond quickly, implementing telemedicine and other strategies to safely meet the ongoing health care needs of uninsured patients, helping to prevent an escalation of the virus, reduced unnecessary emergency room (ER) visits, and preserved hospital capacity.
IN THE LAST YEAR, OUR 60+ MEMBER Free CLINICS REPORTED:
- 60,000+ vulnerable Virginians were treated regardless of their ability to pay
- 209,000+ patient visits
- 434,00+ prescriptions filled
- 6,700+ licensed healthcare professional and lay volunteers donated their time
Extremely adaptable, free clinics are able to establish new services to meet public health needs as they emerge. The free clinic model also provides often-untapped opportunities for collaboration with community partners as well as academic medical centers providing a training ground for emerging health professionals and an incubator for novel research—both advancing care for underserved patients.
Through the dedication and work of Virginia's free clinics, we continue to see the benefit of free clinics as a solid investment of resources for greater healthcare impact.