Dr. Edwin Hendricks
Community Helping Hands Clinic in Cleveland, Georgia, which offers free health care for indigent uninsured residents of White County, is the only free health clinic in the county, and among Americans Helping Americans® newest partners.
“CHHC provides caring, concerned and compassionate high-quality health care to the uninsured residents of White County,” states Executive Director Gene White. “Residents of White County who meet low-income requirements and who do not have health insurance are seen at no charge by benevolent medical professionals for a variety of primary care conditions, including commonly-diagnosed chronic illnesses such as hypertension, coronary artery disease, and diabetes.”
Patients also may be referred to specialists for additional appropriate free care, including dental and vision services. Access to low-cost medications and prescription assistance programs, as well as free diabetic supplies, are among other benefits offered to patients of CHHC, which has experienced more than 1,100 patient visits since opening its doors in 2009 and currently has an active roster of more than 300 patients.
Among them is “Sam” who is in his early 50s who came to CHHC with a myriad of potentially life-threatening health issues.
“When this individual was first seen at CHHC about 18 months ago, he was diagnosed with high cholesterol, hypertension, asthma and was a borderline diabetic, aggravated by being overweight,” reported Gene in February.
“He has been unable to work, has no income and no health insurance, and is not old enough to qualify for Social Security and Medicare. His sister provides all his housing, transportation, and serves as his caregiver.
“Over the course of the last year-and-one-half, he has been treated at CHHC for these conditions,” added Gene. “His blood pressure is now under control, he has access to inhalers to manage his asthma, and his cholesterol is reduced to safe levels.
“He recently reported that he ‘never felt so good’ and that he’s ‘moving better’ and no longer needs his cane or walker, whereas he used to ‘just hobble around.’
“If not for CHHC and his sister, this man might by now be hospitalized or deceased.”
Thanks to the supporters of Americans Helping Americans® we were able to provide CHHC with grant funding for assistance in treatment costs and other operating expenses, in addition to allowing the clinic to expand its medical staff.
Dr. Edwin Hendricks has recently come on board as volunteer at CHHC. Dr. Hendricks completed his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree in 1979, operated a private practice for more than 30 years and retired from active practice last year.
“This year we welcomed the clinic’s fifth doctor, Edwin Hendricks, a veteran Habersham physician,” reported Gene in CHHS’s November newsletter where he thanked the generosity of the community, its founders, and its supportive team of dedicated volunteers who provide a wide array of services.
“Of course, as our nation’s healthcare delivery system continues to evolve, we continue to face the challenges of maintaining sufficient funds to keep our doors open,” he stated. “Hundreds of patients who might otherwise go without necessary treatment rely upon on our resources, including the volunteers and your generous donations.”
“White County has many challenges regarding healthcare, a county which has no hospital, high patient-to-doctor ratio, and an above-average number of residents without any type of insurance,” says Gene.
“With your help, we can resolve a few of those challenges and continue to serve the needs of our neighbors with quality and compassionate healthcare.”