Oklahoma’s FIRST Free Specialty Clinic
Posted on October 16th, 2015
The Medical Clinic for the Uninsured
Oklahoma ranks third in the nation for heart disease – a sobering statistic, but nevertheless one that spurred The Oklahoma Heart Hospital and its Research Foundation to make efforts to see that every person has access to specialty healthcare.
To help treat patients, all patients, insured and those who are uninsured, The Medical Clinic for the Uninsured was founded. The Clinic began in spring of 2014 thanks to the efforts of Zaheer Baber, MD, an Oklahoma Heart Hospital cardiologist.
“For me as a physician, I gain the greatest fulfillment when I am helping those who have the greatest need,” said Dr. Baber. “This is often those who do not have the means to get the care they deserve.”
A 30-year cardiologist veteran who has long supported community clinics and the underserved, Baber has a passion for service as well as seeing those who need help receive it. His effort to expand his volunteer work within the Oklahoma Heart Hospital family came after working at the Mary Mahoney community clinic. That experience inspired him to expand his outreach.
After deliberating with Oklahoma Heart Hospital and Mercy, a partnership formed to open the clinic. Funding from OHH and Mercy provided start-up funds to open the clinic.
To sustain the clinic, fundraising from private individuals and foundations will be ongoing to provide the budgetary needs of the clinic, such as equipment, supplies, and other general needs. Physicians and support staff will continue to donate professional services to patients.
Baber strives to improve the services of the clinic by recruiting specialists in the areas of cardiology, pulmonology, nephrology, and gastroenterology and hopes to see additional specialty services offered to patients.
Patients must apply to be seen at the clinic. This process may be accomplished through the business office of Oklahoma Heart Hospital, or by completing an inquiry through the Health Alliance for the Uninsured. Patients who do not qualify for Medicaid or the subsidy provided for the national health insurance exchange also qualify, but still must go through the application process. Baber said there are currently about 130,000 of these type patients in Oklahoma.
You can help by making a donation to the Oklahoma Heart Hospital Research Foundation/Medical Clinic. Gifts of all sizes are greatly appreciated.
Go to www.okheart.com/research/giving, or mail your check to:
4200 W Memorial, # 510
Oklahoma City, OK 73120