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2013 Top-Rated Nonprofit

VOLUNTEERS IN MEDICINE (national office)

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Ambulatory & Primary Health Care, Community Health Systems, Health, Human Service Organizations, Human Services

Mission: To promote and guide the development of a national network of free clinics emphasizing the use of retired medical and community volunteers within a Culture of Caring to improve access to health care for America's uninsured.

Results: There are currently 96 VIM clinics located in 29 states, providing over 400,000 patient visits to uninsured members of their communities. Over 11,500 medical and non-medical volunteers help staff the clinics and deliver the care. The national VIM office provides support services to open clinics while continuing to assist in the development of additional clinics across the country.

Geographic areas served: Volunteers in Medicine will provides assistance to community across the country.

Programs: Volunteers in Medicine is the only national nonprofit dedicated to the development of free health care clinics for the uninsured. VIM clinics depend on local leadership, community organization and sound planning for sustainability. Experienced VIM staff provide assistance and resource materials through each step of the clinic development process.  A site visit is required to assess leadership potential, trouble shoot and further guide the planning process. Each local organizing committee is required to complete a feasibility study to assess the needs and resources of the community to determine the viability of a VIM clinic VIM clinics emphasize the Culture of Caring treating each person who enters the clinic with dignity and respect. Within this culture, volunteer medical professionals are able to practice pure medicine without the business of medicine and patients are treated as friends and neighbors not a diseases or numbers.

Community Stories

2 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

In 2008, we were exploring the possibilities of expanding a local free clinic, Christian Nursing Service, to better serve our community. We had no physician, a poor facility, and no apparent opportunities. We visited the Volunteers in Medicine Clinic of Bartholomew County and were impressed. We saw a path to developing a clinic for the uninsured in Montgomery County. We contacted Volunteers in Medicine and in 2010, Marjorie Hamrell became our advisor. She visited that fall and talked to the community about Volunteers in Medicine. Later, a group from the Columbus VIM clinic also came and talked to our local physicians and nurses about VIM and about their clinic. At the time, I was President of our Board, a real neophyte in healthcare. Marjorie became my guide and through weekly phone calls and several hundred email messages, she helped us formulate policies and plans for the future.
In 2011, we received a $900,000 3:1 challenge grant from North Central Health Service (NCHS) in Lafayette, In. We raised the additional 300,000 from the community in less than 6 months and started construction of our new clinic in the fall of 2012. On Monday, August 26, we saw our first patients in the Dr. Mary Ludwig Free Clinic.
Through our association with VIM, we also received a grant from American Academy of Family Physicians to purchase medical examination tables.
In 2012, I stepped down as President of the Board and became the first Executive Director of Montgomery County Free Clinic, Inc. So I am writing this as the Executive Director, but, I continue to be the primary contact with Marjorie. VIM provided us a viable model for a free clinic that focused on the patient; provided the necessary organizational support to focus our work; and linked us with other VIM clinics whio provided help. You can read more about our clinic at http://mcfreeclinic.org.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Although the behind-the-scenes activities of the national office cannot be possibly be missed, I would like to especially point out how wonderful Marge Hamrell, our coach has been in helping us launch Coastal VIM in New Jersey. It never ceases to amaze me how organized, kind, compassionate, thorough, and incredibly helpful she is! Shefacilitated each step of the way towards our opening day with unfailing commitment, and respect. Thank you all at the national office. And thank you to all the donors who make their invaluable work possible!

Comments ( 1 )


skelley 05/23/2013

Thank you for your comment, Sonia and welcome to the VIM Alliance!