January 28, 2009
At a time when many are losing health insurance due to layoffs or changes in job status, a Tulane University medical student is making it easier for families to find information about free health clinics in the area.
Second year medical student Richard Brucker created NolaFreeHealthCare.com, an online listing of New Orleans area clinics that offer free or low-cost medical care to those who don’t have insurance and can’t afford health care. The listing, which is also distributed via paper pamphlets at area homeless shelters and community centers, includes each clinic’s hours of operation, cost of health care, population served and the types of medical care offered at the facility.
“With the economy in a recession, people are struggling with health care costs and feel like they don’t have access to care,” Brucker says. “I want people to know that there are resources out there for them so that they can get the medical help they need.”
The listing was created more than a year ago as a resource for the city’s homeless who had gathered in Duncan Plaza. Brucker continued to expand the listings to include resources beyond programs strictly aimed at helping the homeless. The site includes links to maps that give directions to each clinic. It also features information about low-cost $4 prescription drug programs, including a custom search feature that allows users to quickly determine if a drug is available at the discounted rate. Brucker says his guide is unique in that it is one of the few that is continually updated. “The website always has up-to-date information,” he says.
Brucker is getting national recognition for his work in creating the site and volunteering to help the homeless through his work with the student chapter of Tulane Physicians for Social Responsibility.
He is slated to receive a 2009 American Medical Association Foundation Leadership Award on March 11 at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. The group is paying to send him to a three-day advocacy and leadership conference.
Tulane University, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5000 firstname.lastname@example.org