September 14, 2009
The Charlottesville Free Clinic has served working, uninsured adults and their families in the Charlottesville-Albemarle community since its opening in 1996. And after a $400,000 renovation, clinic officials say they are ready to serve even more.
Joseph Consylman has been a patient at the Charlottesville Free Clinic for year. While working three jobs to make ends meet, he was unable to afford health insurance. Consylman was first diagnosed with Diabetes at the free clinic, a condition that went undiagnosed for 12 years.
"Now with the clinic, I don't worry about those issues anymore. I'm not underneath that stress and that threat of being put out of commission totally because of my poor health," he said.
The renovations helped add a new dental daytime clinic, two exam rooms and a larger pharmacy. Clinic officials are hoping the large-scale improvements will help them serve even more people like Consylman.
"It's so assuring that when people call we can say 'please come to the Free Clinic'. It really is just creating a place for the community to come - be it patients or volunteers - coming to provide the services. It's really a welcoming and inviting space," said Executive Director, Erika Viccellio.
Clinic officials say they have already been able to treat more patients, they've reduced their waiting list from 1,000 to 200 patients.
And the Free Clinic has the Charlottesville community to thank for making the renovations possible, as all $400,000 was raised locally.
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