CINCINNATI - The Tri-State is home to major hospitals engaged in a wide range of treatment, research and innovative activities. In our "Hospital Checkups" series, WCPO asks each hospital to pick one thing it is doing new or differently in 2014.
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TriHealth: Good Samaritan Free Health Center
"Free Help When You Need it Most"
As Americans continue to navigate healthcare insurance waters, there is at least one friendly shore in sight for Cincinnati residents: The Good Samaritan Free Health Center in Price Hill. It’s a major initiative by TriHealth, and it serves people who are over 18, not pregnant, and not receiving Medicare, Medicaid, or private health insurance. Patients must live in Hamilton County.
At Good Samaritan Free Health Center, patients can receive primary and specialty care, dental care, physical therapy, and some psychological services.
“The remarkable thing about the people we see is that, hands down, our patients are trying to do the right thing,” said Linda Smith Berry, RN, nurse manager of the Good Samaritan Free Health Center. “They’re trying not to receive federal assistance. They’re trying to work. They’re working several part time jobs, and they cannot make ends meet.”
The center is staffed by volunteers: doctors and nurses from hospitals across the Tri-State, interpreters, dentists, front desk workers, and physical therapists from the College of Mount Saint Joseph.
“I have volunteer physicians who sign up for a set time every month. I have some retired physicians who come in once a week,” says Smith Berry. “And what’s nice about that is I can also provide for the patient the continuity of seeing the same person every time I come in, to the best that we can.”
If a patient needs help paying for prescription medicines or transportation to other medical appointments, the Good Samaritan Free Health Center can help make arrangements for that as well, through the help of Saint Vincent de Paul Charitable Pharmacy and the Everybody Rides Metro program .
The center also offers diabetic group classes, healthy living classes, and plans to start a smoking cessation class and a walking club.
The Good Samaritan Free Health Center does not receive federal, state, or local funding. Instead, it operates through the generosity of private donors and the Good Samaritan Hospital Foundation.
“We’re clean. We’re respectful. We’re, as a group, kind. People get treated here like they pay a thousand dollars for this visit,” Smith Berry said. “It’s very thorough. It’s exactly like what you and I pay for, which is the way it should be.”
- To make an appointment or volunteer, call (513) 246-6888
- Hours: Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- About TriHealth
Editor's note: On Monday, "Hospital Checkups" continues with a major initiative at UC Health, where surgeons are using a new robotic system designed to allow patients to recover from a hysterectomy more quickly than with traditional surgeries, without visible scars.
Video by Mark Bowen of Mark Bowen Media and reporting by Gretchen MacKnight.