HEALTH AND WELLNESS

The Good Samaritan Clinic: Celebrating 13 years of community medical service.

The number 13 is believed by some to be an unlucky number. Others consider it a lucky number. A few people don’t like the number 13 at all, and this fear is called triskaidekaphobia.

The Good Samaritan Clinic in downtown Fort Smith celebrates the number 13. Back in 2003, a local group recognized that the community was trying to grow, and there were many challenges.

One of those challenges was overcoming the lack of healthcare available to those individuals who had no insurance and no access to quality medical services.

Dr. Kemal Kutait and Ramona Roberts were two instrumental leaders in taking this challenge head on. They organized the first night for the clinic at a local church. Some 70 people showed up, confirming the need for such a community service.  Thus the Good Samaritan Clinic was born. For the past thirteen years, as a team, the clinic and its supporters have provided care for the sick, for low-income people and the under-served.

Over the past 13 years, the Good Samaritan Clinic has continued to serve people in the area. It has become one of  Fort Smith’s best kept secrets, working in many ways to improve the broader community.

  1. The clinic serves an average of 394 patient visits per month and employs 6 full-time staff members.

  2. The clinic provides medical care to over 12,900 patients. Without assistance, these people would become worse health wise, develop and suffer untreated chronic illnesses, continue to miss work due to untreated illnesses, and continue down the twisted fate of financial distress.

  3. Patients are not just the uninsured but the insured who are underserved. With the changes in healthcare laws many people have found themselves having to buy health insurance, but are still not able to afford the co-pays or deductibles. This includes those with Medicaid, who are having a difficult time finding a doctor who accepts new patients.

  4. The Good Samaritan Clinic treats those who are homeless, unemployed and sick by providing ongoing medical care, a safe place to go, get prescriptions and access to free hygiene products.

  5. Many supporting community partners make it possible for the clinic to help those who require close medical monitoring and expensive daily prescriptions. Many times the ability to receive quality healthcare and to access medications allows our patients to reclaim their health and return to work, or to  find a job.

  6. Services extend to non-insured business owners and others who can avail themselves of medical care without having to pay high out-of-pocket costs for emergency care.

  7. The clinic cares for the whole person. This includes medical care, counseling, limited dental services, chiropractic and optical care, health education, and preventative care. In one visit, the optical clinic can not only examine eyes, provide frames, cut the lens, but the patient walks out seeing clearly.

  8. Last year the clinic gave out over 1.5 million dollars’ worth of pharmaceuticals, working with organizations to provide low-cost or free prescriptions to patients.

  9. Back-to-school and sports physicals can be completed at Good Samaritan Clinic for only $25.

  10. Average lobby wait time is 15 minutes, and average co-pay is $10.00.

  11. No one is turned away due to their inability to pay.

  12. The clinic has a website and can be found on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

  13. Finally, the clinic has started its first online campaign at GoFundMe.com/goodsamaritanfs. The intent is to raise $13,000.00 in honor of serving the great area of the Arkansas River Valley for thirteen years.

The Clinic is providing a local avenue for creating change by providing a chance for those who just need a hand-up. Albert Einstein is reputed to have once said,“You can’t solve a problem on the same level it was created. You have to rise above it to the next level.” The Good Samaritan Clinic has accepted the challenge to rise to the next level.


A Fort Smith native, Britteny is a UAFS graduate with an Associate of Arts in Early Childhood Education.  After 7 years of teaching in public education, she seized the opportunity to work with the Good Samaritan Clinic as the organization's Development Officer.  Continuing her passion for people, she is excited to use her talents to help others.

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BSavvy Magazine

Office:
PO Box 537
Fort Smith, AR 72901
Office Phone:
479-653-1221

 Contact

BSavvy Magazine

Colleen Perry

  (479) 653-1221

Colleen@bsavvymagazine.com

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