Best Health Care Provider
Published: September 21, 2011
2800 Kirk Ave., (410) 467-7140, shepherdsclinic.org
Whatever the court outcome of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, there are people right here in Baltimore closing the gap between insured and uninsured. Thousands of people in Baltimore who cannot afford private insurance yet make too much money to qualify for state assistance take advantage of Shepherd Clinic’s services. In 2010, it had 5,078 patient visits. That’s 1,101 more visits than in 2000, and 4,228 more visits than when the clinic was founded in 1991, and a continuing rough economy figures its numbers will rise. If you fit the criteria—and we know there are many artists, musicians, underemployed, and struggling one-parent households out there who do—an office visit will set you back the cost of one hour’s wage (or $9 if you’re unemployed). The respected clinic is staffed by more than 250 doctors, nurses, and health care professionals who donate their time and energy. Shepherd’s has also recently expanded its focus on primary and specialty care to include mental health care and counseling. It’s even set up a wellness center where folks can de-stress. We may argue that access to good health care is a right, and argue even longer about how to make that happen. Meanwhile Shepherd’s is doing it right now.