A Special Gift Of Care

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Like more than a few people in the area, early this year, Earl and Gladys (last names withheld) lost their jobs in Payson because of economic cutbacks.

Earl was able to collect unemployment insurance, but Gladys was not able to do so. This left them with very little income on which to live.

Only three weeks after they both lost their jobs, Gladys came down with a serious illness. She was treated at the Payson Regional Medical Center emergency department and was given a diagnosis that would require frequent visits to a doctor.

Now what to do, since they had no medical insurance?

A neighbor told them about the Payson Christian Clinic, located one block north of Payson Regional Medical Center at 701 Ponderosa St. Gladys made an appointment and was seen the next day. She is now on the road to recovery thanks to the fine doctors at the facility.

After hearing this and other stories that are similar, I requested and was granted an interview by one of the founding doctors at the clinic Dr. Alan Michels.

He shared some interesting facts with me the other evening. Many of our local doctors participate in assisting needy area residents at this clinic.

The charge is $20 per visit and an additional family member is $5. If a person is unable to pay, they are treated regardless. Michels said that almost without fail, the patients who are not able to pay at the time of treatment, return later with a $20 donation. If that is not possible, then donors or the doctors themselves pay.

The general mission of the Payson Christian Clinic is to help people with the ailments that affect their health. The clinic assists patients with diabetes management, high blood pressure and provides services for the homeless. Well woman exams are given as well as treatment for many other aliments.

The clinic has been operating for a little more than two years and this year has treated more than 2,000 patients. The clinic has four exam rooms, two waiting rooms and a business office.

All who work at the facility are volunteers including the doctors and nurses. The doctors who volunteer include Michels, Judith Hunt, Betty Smith, Alfonso Munoz, Luis and Ramona Coppelli, Kevin Quinn, John Dacany and Amelia Pineres.

Peter Zonakis, Robert Rimmer, Ivan McLaws, Khalid Naqi, Simranjit Galhotra, Claudio Zamarano and Mike Morgan offer consultant help.

Medical service providers that work with the clinic are Payson Physical Therapy, Payson Regional Medical Center, Simon Imaging, and Sonora Quest.

The Payson Christian Clinic is a 501 (c) 3 nonprofit organization and donations are tax deductible. They are also among the nonprofits qualifying for the Arizona Tax Credit Program. In this time of giving, consider helping the poor who need the medical assistance provided by the Payson Christian Clinic. Donations will be gladly accepted and are tax deductible. Call (928) 468-2209 for further details.

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