Tag: Southwest Virginia
Please turn out for the public meeting Wednesday, August 5th, 6 PM, at the Blacksburg Public Library, 200 Miller Street. A spokesperson for the arsenal will attend.
Odd what catches one's attention. The nice tents and orderly processes were expected. What caught my eye was the condition of the Wise County Fairgrounds as the Remote Area Medical (RAM) effort came to an end. The clients left the grounds far tidier than I would have ever expected. In fact, quite clean. A sign of respect? Or just the nature of people in this part of Virginia. Everywhere you go people are friendlier and more open to strangers than in more urban areas.
At the close of this RAM I was told that the last count at mid-morning had been 2,700 and that the total was likely near last year's 3,000 treated. The numbers are misleading. At every RAM, people are turned away and there is no accurate count of those. If the capacity supported more, the numbers would have some meaning. What is clear is that demand is growing either from awareness or economic conditions.
What I didn't know is that Wise is just one of three clinics that RAM has organized in far Southwest Virginia this year. Next: Jonesville, Virginia; 13 - 14 September. Then: Grundy, Virginia; 4 - 5 October. What I didn't expect was the efficiency of the breakdown of the camp. I now want to take part in and watch the arrival and assembly. For those who want to volunteer, information is available at the RAM website. Note that you should register early as registration can close; it closed a month before the clinic in Wise.
Another thing I didn't realize: the State Fairgrounds at the center of Oklahoma City, The Seattle Center in, of course, Seattle, and the Manhattan Convention Center in New York City now qualify as "remote." New York City! Clinics will be held at those locations in August, October, and November respectively. What does this say about health care in the United States? I am not really sure other than something is amiss.
Here's the deal:
-- RAM -- Remote Area Medical -- recruits volunteer medical personnel to hold clinics in underserved areas of the US.
Of the 13 RAM clinics this year, THREE are in Virginia and TWO others are in NE TN, adjacent to SW VA.
-- People start lining up 2-3 days in advance, sleeping in their cars and trucks, to get medical, dental, and optical care. For most of these folks, this is the ONLY medical care they will get ALL YEAR.
-- The vast majority of these people have jobs -- they WORK.
-- Here are videos from previous RAM clinics in Wise County
Oh, and did I mention: WE DON'T NEED THAT DAMN MEDICAID EXPANSION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!