Free health care service clinic comes to region

Published 10:25 am Friday, June 22, 2018

by Kenya Smith / Intern

Remote Area Medical (RAM) of Virginia is scheduled to be present on Saturday, June 23 and Sunday, June 24, at Greensville High School in Emporia. RAM is a nonprofit operator of mobile medical clinics that deliver free, high-quality, dental, vision and medical care to underserved and uninsured individuals.Their services are listed as follows:


• Cleanings

• Fillings

• Extractions

• X-rays


• Complete dilated eye exams

• Eyeglasses made on site

• Testing for glaucoma

• Testing for diabetic retinopathy


• Breast exams

• Diabetes screening


• Women’s health

• Medical

• General medicine

RAM offers services on a first-come, first-serve basis. Patients will be asked to choose between dental and vision services due to time constraints. All patients will have the option of receiving dental and medical or vision and medical, but not dental and vision on the same day.

Jean Blackburn, who works for Southampton County Social Services, is part of a committee that helps coordinate with Southside RAM. She explained how areas host a RAM clinic.

“Before an area can host a Remote Area Medical clinc, a study is done to determine the uninsured, unemployed, and population of the area,” Blackburn said, “The Tennessee-based RAM team came to Emporia last year and determined that there was a need in our area for such a clinic.”

RAM receives financial assistance from various resources including grants and donations from churches, organizations and individuals. Blackburn has seen how RAM has made an impact in the lives of people from Southampton County.

“Last year, I saw Southampton County residents being able to receive glasses that they couldn’t afford, as well as dental procedures and other services,” she said.

The clinic parking lot will be open no later than midnight, and tickets will be distributed at 3 a.m. Patients will be seen in chronological order when clinic doors are open at 6 a.m.

Educational opportunities will be provided for waiting patients that will discuss subjects such as diabetes, nutrition, arthritis, heart disease, certification in opioid overdose treatment and more.

Patients are not required to bring any identification, insurance, proof of residency or proof of income. They are encouraged to bring all of their daily medications and take them as they would normally do. Due to long waiting hours, patients are also encouraged to bring food, water and entertainment such as books or games.