By Lesley AtkinsonSeptember 13, 2018
Members of Kenner Army Health Clinic and Colonel Bull Dental Clinic have been contributing their medical skills, time and knowledge to a non-profit healthcare organization called Remote Area Medical Volunteer Corps.
RAM is a mobile medical clinic that delivers health care services to remote, isolated, uninsured and underserved individuals and communities around the globe. The organization has been providing free medical care for over 33 years. This service has brought nearly 120,000 humanitarian volunteers together from a variety of services like dental, vision, engineering, and medical services.
Lt. Col. Dentonio Worrell, Colonel Bull Dental Clinic commander, has been volunteering and finds it easy to help because the organization provides all the equipment, materials and supplies. He also mentions how giving to others has been a rewarding experience.
"I buzz with a high after helping with an event for weeks," said Worrell. "The opportunity to use the gifts of healing, we've been fortunate to receive as healthcare providers. These are people who are desperately in need and can't afford healthcare. Giving is true living."
ABC news reported in 2014 that 33 million in America are still without health insurance. Selena Cabral, an optometry technician from Kenner was one of those statistics and for more than 20 years did not have health insurance.
"I made too much money for assistance and too little to purchase insurance," voiced Cabral. "I was on the praying program … I prayed for my son and myself not to get sick or have a catastrophic event. I only went to the doctors for emergencies and cringed when the bill came."
She finds it important not only for herself but for others to give back to others in need.
"We have to do better about helping one another instead of looking down on people and assuming why they are in the position they are in because we all need help sometimes," she said. "If I could help someone who is in the situation I was once in…why not? We have to come out of our 'It's all about me house' sometimes."
Registered nurse Sharon Adams, a clinical nurse coordinator at Kenner, is a Virginia RAM ambassador and volunteer. She works in her spare time to ensure patients who do not have health/medical insurance are able to receive health care at no cost.
"I got involved with RAM as a direct result of the Affordable Care Act during the Obama administration due to needs for healthcare for underserved communities," said Adams.
"I reached out to Kenner's medical team to see if anyone wanted to offer their services and assist. Myself and along with some other team members have worked hard to assure that the care of the underserved is priority. This my passion and I devote much of my time to helping others."
In 2016, RAM volunteers delivered free health care to 30,963 people in the U.S. and over 5,000 of those were in Virginia. Next year RAM plans to set up 10 mobile stations in Virginia.
If anyone is interested in volunteering or has questions please contact Sharon Adams by email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.ramusa.org and register. All credentials and licenses are checked prior to volunteering.