In 2014, over 104,000 patients made over 350,000 visits to Volunteers in Medicine clinics. These patients are hardworking individual who fall through the cracks. They make too little to afford health insurance and too much to qualify for subsidies through the Affordable Care Act (ACA).
A total of 11,262 medical and non-medical volunteers shared their expertise and skills in Volunteers in Medicine (VIM) clinics to deliver quality health care services to the uninsured in their communities. These figures are based on the 2014 VIM Alliance Annual Survey; 80 of the 96 eligible Volunteers in Medicine clinics responded.
Volunteers in Medicine clinics are community-owned and operated providing care, free of charge, in 29 states across the country. In addition to providing primary care services, 20 of the VIM clinics participating in the survey provide pediatric care and 36 provide dental services. Fifty-seven of the participating VIM clinics also function as a training center for medical, nursing and dental students. These clinics have a formal relationship with their local medical, dental or nursing school and students volunteer as part of the curriculum.
While the ACA has provided millions with access to health insurance, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, approximately 30 million adults remain uninsured. Volunteers in Medicine and other charitable clinics continue to make a difference by providing care to those who fall through the cracks.