FLAGLER FREE CLINIC
February marks the clinics completion of sixteen years serving the medical needs of our communitys uninsured residents. The clinic was established in February 2005, in 2020 we were able to provide over two million dollars worth of free care for our patients. This would not be possible without the assistance of many. In recognition of this milestone, we are going to spend the month of February celebrating the people, businesses, and donors that have helped keep our mission going through the years.
||DR DON ALFONSO
Today we celebrate Dr. Don Alfonso. Dr. Don was a co-founder of the Flagler Free Clinic and has been an active volunteer since its inception. Dr. Don is known for his kind and caring personality.
Dr. John Canakaris and Faith Coleman ARNP were co-founders of the free clinic along with Dr. Don. Mrs. Georgia Canakaris explains how the clinic got started. Georgia served on the board of the clinic for many years after her husband's death in 2012. Faith Coleman passed away in late 2014. Their vision is kept alive in the clinic still today.
Michaelyn is not only a great volunteer, but she is also the treasurer on the clinics board of directors. Michaelyn sets a beautiful example of using your life to help others and we always learn from the example that she sets.
Hazel does not believe in lots of fanfare and recognition, but if anyone deserves recognition it is her. Hazel not only volunteers at the clinic every week but she is active in many other non-profit activities. A wonderful citizen of our community.
||BISH MAHADEO-APLUS PHARMACY
Bish and A Plus Pharmacy is one of the clinics outstanding community partners. He is always available to help find ways for patients to get the medication that they need. He is one of the most pleasant people you will ever meet!
The team at the Bunnell Pharmacy has been assisting the free clinic since its inception. They help with medication and other medical supplies that our patients need. They are also great neighbors. Every interaction with this team is happy!
This week (FEB-08) we are going to introduce our Facebook followers to the volunteers who each day contribute to the fulfillment of our mission. Each day requires multiple volunteers to provide medical visits, to register new patients, to take care of patient requests for prescription refills, and to take care of of the other needs that all businesses have like accounting, fund-raising, records upkeep to name just a few!
The Monday team is made up of Dr. Jane Walter, Podiatry, Paul Bond APRN, Patricia Thomasy RN, and the administrative team of Carol Bok, Pat Prill, Vanessa Gonsalves. This team works so well together and they all make Monday a great day!
This is our Tuesday team. This group has been working together for several years and they ensure that Tuesdays always run smoothly and efficiently. Dr. Gauri is a retired anesthesiologist but provides acupuncture services for our patients who struggle with many painful conditions. Nurse Valerie and George meets with all new patients to get a full medical history so that the patient can be assigned to a volunteer provider who will meet their specific needs. Violet provides accounting services, sends out our thank you letters to donors, and keeps track of all our volunteer hours. Kathy and Vanessa register new patients among many other tasks. There are many years of incredible work experience that this group brings in service to the free clinic.
The free clinic has long been an organization that supports students who are interested in entering the medical profession in many different capacities. From student nurses, individuals who have finished medical school and are waiting for residency programs, CNAs, Medical Assistants, and nurse practitioners, we welcome the opportunity to influence their future. Vanessa is the latest student to join the free clinic team. She is a pleasure to work with and is always has a positive and happy attitude.
Wednesday is one of the busiest days of the week at the clinic.
These wonderful volunteers are at the clinic every Wednesday.
Michaelyn meets with patients to prepare the required paperwork and documentation that is required for labs,
imaging, and other diagnostic tests. Pat, Barbara, and Kathy register new patients and prepare legal documents
for patient appointments for the next week. Of course, Vanessa, who is so enthusiastic in her preparation
for a career in healthcare, helps in many different tasks. This group not only assists patients but makes sure
that the clinic is ready for the upcoming weeks appointments. What a wonderful group of clinic volunteers.
You might notice that five of the six folks in this picture are familiar from another day this week.
That is because many of our team members volunteer more than once a week. George, Kathy, and Violet
come in on Tuesday and Thursday. Valerie is here Monday-Thursday and Saturday.
Laurie is our volunteer pharmacist, she keeps the free clinic medication room stocked with sample medication
for our patients, makes sure that accurate and precise records are kept, and maintains our medication inventory.
||HAZEL DEVEAUX AND SUE OSMOND
Hazel and Sue are both registered nurses with many years of nursing experience. On Friday they sort through donations of supplies and medications. They then add the supplies that the clinic can use to our exam rooms, call patients that they know need something that we have received, and pack up and distribute donations that the clinic cannot use to churches and mission workers. This is a labor intense job, but they see it through with a smile on their face and a happy attitude. We love these ladies!
||THE SATURDAY GROUPS
Patients are seen at the clinic three Saturdays each month, but we have a slightly different team each Saturday.
Marge runs the front desk every Saturday, checking patients in and out, scheduling appointments,
and taking care of many other “pop-up” issues.
Sophia is our newest student volunteer and shadows the nurses as they prepare the patients.
Dr Don Alfonso works on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of the Month along with Josiah and Adrian.
Dr. Iheme sees patients on the second Saturday of each month.
Valerie and Patricia provide nursing support for the providers.
You will recognize Pat as a member of the Monday team as well.
Dr Mark Kennedy provides Eye care and works with Dr Don on 1st Saturdays of the month.
These are dynamic and efficient groups, and they keep their respective Saturdays running like
a finely tuned machines.
These are unsolicited testimonials from a random 3 of our patients who wanted to share their experience with us, and who spoke from the bottom of their hearts! We truly appreciate them and we are grateful for their kind words! DEBORAH, DAWN, PATRICIA AND FRANK - We thank you!
This week (FEB-15) we want to spotlight so of the amazing groups that provide monetary donations to the free clinic. The Flagler Free Clinic does not receive any reimbursement for the services that we provide, we depend on private-sector donations, grants, and fund-raising events. We are a business that has operating expenses like all businesses, rent, utilities, office supplies all must be paid, and the awesome support of our Flagler County community makes it possible for us to continue the important work of the clinic.
||JACK LECKIE - HAMMOCK DUNES CARES
Today we recognize Hammock Dunes Cares. Hammock Dunes Cares is a non-profit organization created by the residents of Hammock Dunes. The president of their board is Mr. Jack Leckie who advocates for the clinic in so many ways. Jack introduced the clinics mission to the Hammock Dunes group, recruits volunteers for the clinic, and was a guiding force behind the new Community Garden project. Thank you, Jack, for your support and most importantly for your example of altruism and generosity.
||AFFORDABLE CARE ACT
We are interrupting our normally scheduled anniversary month posts for an important message.
||NANCY SWINDERMAN - HAMMOCK THRIFT SHOP
Nancy Swinderman is owner of the Hammock Thrift Shop, located on A1A across from publix. She has been donating to the Flagler Free Clinic for the last few years and we deeply appreciate her ongoing support for us!
||DR SHINOO WAINGANKAR
Dr Shinoo Waingankar, a retired Orthopedic Surgeon, has been a volunteer at the Flagler Free Clinic since 2016. He is also a member of our Board Of Directors and a proud donor to our clinic! His wife Dr Gauri also volunteers and provides Acupuncture treatments to our patients as well! We are so grateful for the services they provide to our patients and to our Flagler Clinic Family!
||DR JOHN CANAKARIS - FAITH COLEMAN
Sixteen years ago, today, February 19, 2005, the Flagler County Free Clinic held their first clinic for uninsured citizens
of Flagler County. Today we celebrate and honor the clinics co-founders, Dr. John Canakaris and Faith Coleman ARNP.
|FEB 20||CANAKARIS - COLEMAN AWARDS|
The Flagler Free Clinic celebrates “National Volunteer Appreciation Month” every April.
In 2018 our administrative team wanted to find a way to continue to honor and remember the dedication
and work that Dr. John and Faith exhibited in their life.
We created the Canakaris-Coleman Dedication to Volunteerism Award to acknowledge two clinic volunteers
each year (one administrative and one clinical volunteer).
Today we honor the award recipients.
Many non-profit organizations have seen a significant decline in donations during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The inability to hold the clinics traditional fund-raising events for the last year could have created a situation
that would have made it necessary to decrease our operating hours to cut costs. But we reached out to our donors
and our community and because of their generosity the clinic was able to continue business as usual.
Among the groups, clubs, and organizations that support the clinic every year are many local churches. We want to publicly thank the following churches for the support that they have provided the Flagler Free Clinic; Christ Lutheran Church, Flagler Beach United Methodist, Palm Coast United Methodist, Palm Coast Seventh Day Adventist, Primera Iglesia Bautista Hispana De Palm Coast, Saint Thomas Episcopal, First United Methodist Bunnell, Saint Marks by The Sea Lutheran, Trinity Presbyterian, and Parkview Baptist.
The clinic has remained open for patient care during the pandemic, however three of our providers were not comfortable
with in-person patient encounters. So, they embraced tele-health. Dr. Lance Chodosh, primary care, has been a clinic
volunteer for five years. Dr. Mulki Bhat, neurology, joined the clinic team in 2016. Phyllis Wolff, APRN diabetic
specialist has been seeing the clinics diabetic patients for three years.
Yesterdays post highlighted our providers who see patients via tele-health, two of the three are specialist
(Dr. Bhat, neurology and Phyllis Wolff, diabetic specialist).
In an earlier post we introduced Dr. S Waingankar, Orthopedic, Dr. G Waingankar, Acupuncture, Dr. Walter, podiatry,
and Dr. Kennedy, Eye Care.
|FEB 24||ADVENT HEALTH|
Advent Health has assisted the free clinic as a community partner for many years. In 2015, after the decision was made to greatly expand the clinics
services, they began providing free labs and imaging for our patients. This has had a dramatic impact on the level of care and scope of service that we
are able to provide. The value of these free services exceeds $700,000.00 each year!
||PHYLLIS VANREETH - COMMUNITY CARES NETWORK
Phyllis has been a great supporter of the free clinic both in patient care and volunteering at all the clinics fund-raising events.
She is fun, sassy, hardworking, and a talented registered nurse.
||PEGGY HENGEVELD - VOLUNTEER AND BOARD PRESIDENT|
Its awfully hard to articulate how important this beautiful lady is to the free clinic.
Peggy has so many talents and skills! First and foremost, she is humble and the ultimate team captain.
She retired as a full Colonel from the United States Army, Department of Defense,
and has more experiences than there is room to print here.
Peggy became a volunteer nurse at the clinic in 2015, joined the clinics board of directors in 2017,
and became our board president in 2018 and is still serving as our board president.
This is the group that keeps the wheels turning at the clinic. We could never provide the services that we do without every one of our fantastic volunteers,
but you need a team who will make sure that we are organized, and that we dot our Is and cross our Ts.
FROM LEFT TO RIGHT
||THE GRAND FINALE WAVE!
We hope that our Facebook followers have enjoyed getting to know the clinic volunteers, community partners, donors, and staff during our February anniversary
celebration. We look forward to getting back to some of our community events later this year including our holiday open house.
In the meantime, please spread the word about the important work that the Flagler Free Clinic continues to provide to the uninsured members of our community.
We welcome new volunteers, new community partners, and new donors; and we sincerely thank
|MAR 01||THE SUMMARY!||10:50|
For the last 28 days we have been posting pictures and videos to commemorate the 16 year anniversary of the Flagler Free Clinic.
We truly appreciate all the "LIKES" and "LOVES" you have given us throughout the month!
And so here is the icing on the cake for this event, a summary collection of all the postings boiled down to 11 minutes...
|MAR 14||BOB THE ELECTRICIAN|
As we all know the free clinic depends on volunteer power to provide care to our patients,
but we also depend on volunteer power to take care of many, many tasks to keep our clinic facility
operational. Things like janitorial service, plumbing issues, painting upkeep, and numerous other
housekeeping chores could cost the clinic thousands of dollars each year but thanks to many
community volunteers these chores are completed at incredibly low cost to the clinic.
This is Bob the clinics volunteer electrician. Bob has spent about twenty hours at the clinic
over the last two weeks to replace old fluorescent lighting and upgrade to LED lights.
The difference is amazing! Thank you, Bob, we appreciate you and all that you have done to assist
the Flagler Free Clinic.