Rick can hardly remember a time before the Clearwater Free Clinic. A longtime fisherman in the Clearwater area, access to affordable health insurance through his work was not a luxury that he was allowed. He first sought out the Clinic’s care a few years ago when he was between jobs and ineligible for government programs, like Medicare. He knew he needed medical care, and he knew just where he could get it.

“The Clearwater Free Clinic staff and volunteers always treat you with respect, not like you are looking for a hand out,” he gushes. He recalls a time when he frequented a free clinic in another state and often felt belittled by those that were supposed to be caring for him and his family. Thankfully, his experience at the Clearwater Free Clinic would be one that would change his mind about the kind of care individuals and families can receive at free clinics.

Upon arriving at the Clinic with hopes to receive treatment for another chronic condition, Clinic nurse practitioner Jan along with one of our trusted volunteer cardiologists decided to refer him to a specialist. Rick was diagnosed with arrhythmia, a potentially dangerous heart condition. Through the Clinic, he was able to receive medications to help regulate his condition and even receive preventative care, like prostate exams and follow up appointments.


Now insured through Medicaid, he remains the self-proclaimed biggest fan of the Clearwater Free Clinic. He now trusts the Clinic with his daughter’s health care needs; she is one of our newest patients and will likely be treated by some of the same nurses and doctors that provided him with the superior health care that improved his quality of life.