Local Clinic Serves Residents Who Can't Afford Health Insurance - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Local Clinic Serves Residents Who Can't Afford Health Insurance

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DENISON, TX -- As flu season circulates and the economy tries to pull itself up, many Americans are struggling with how to afford medical care for their family. Deeda Payton visited a local clinic today that cares for those without health insurance.

Flu season is not a good time to be without health insurance, but many families simply can't afford it. "With the economy today, there are a lot of people who don't have insurance or can't afford insurance. They may be making good salary and they may not be making good salary but insurance is the factor today."

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 20-percent of the population under the age of 65 was without health insurance in 2008. One local clinic is here to help that 20-percent. "We service those people that have no insurance. We also service people with medicare and we hope to get medicaid soon."

The Greater Texoma Health Clinic in Denison started six years ago. Today, it sees more than three-thousand visitors a year. Fees are paid on a sliding scale, based on income. "If you've got 4 to 5 kids in school and they all come down with the flu, you got to have somewhere to take them, you've go to be able to afford to take somewhere and if you are already established here, we can usually get you in within the same day."

Last month, as flu season worsened, officials saw an increase of 90 new patients. "I think there were three days last week that I didn't take my mask off because people coming in with flu-like symptoms." and, this clinic's services don't stop with doctor visits, they continue at the pharmacy with prescription assistance programs. "there are companies out there that give away medicine. You just have to fill out the right paperwork and know where to send it."

the clinic says the state recently started giving out its tamiflu stock for free to patients who would benefit from it, but can't pay for it. And, their doctors can write prescriptions for the state stock. It's just one more way this clinic is helping local families fight back against the flu and the recession.
    
The clinic is also expecting 110 doses of the H1N1 vaccine for its patients. For more information on how you can become a patient, you can call the Greater Texoma Health Clinic at 903-465-2440 or visit their website at www.greaterthc.org.

Deeda Payton, KTEN News.