A bout eighteen years ago, the mission committee of First Presbyterian Church, Bristol, TN read an article in Parade Magazine about the health care crisis in the United States. It stated that one million more Americans go without health insurance each year (47 million to date) and one way communities could help was to start a free clinic. One hundred people attended the first planning meeting to discuss founding the clinic. In just 18 short months, Healing Hands Health Center opened.
Healing Hands, located at 210 Memorial Drive Bristol, TN, provides medical care and much needed medications, dental care through exams, x-rays, cleanings, extractions and fillings, chiropractic care, eye exams and eyeglasses, psychological and spiritual counseling services for our working, uninsured neighbors all at no charge. The services that the clinic has provided have been free for 16 years, only requesting patient donations. Most patients are happy to give the clinic such a small donation of $10 or $20 compared to the hundreds or thousands of dollars it costs to see a doctor or dentist without health insurance.
The clinic has numerous partnerships including Bristol Regional Medical Center, United Way of
Bristol, ETSU Dental Hygiene School whose students clean our patients teeth every Monday and Wednesday, ETSU Quillen College of Medicine which provides physicians for an annual free health fair open to the public, King College Nursing students and over 200 extremely dedicated volunteers, such as doctors, nurses, dentists, dental assistants, chiropractors, optometrists, opticians, counselors, clerical workers, drug room volunteers, and receptionists. Many patients give back to the clinic by volunteering their services such as cleaning the building, landscaping and painting.
To be eligible, everyone must go through an application process. Patients must prove that they live in our community, work, are low income, uninsured, and give proof that their total household income is at or below 200%. Patients find out whether they qualify the day they come in to the clinic and are told where to get help if they do not qualify. The clinic acts as a referral source and we do not overlap or duplicate services.
A Christian Ministry Serving the Unmet Health Care Needs of Bristol Area Residents!
Healing Hands Health Center Receives
The 2014 Community Impact Award from The American Red Cross