Standing Room Only at Muslim Free Clinic

May 2, 2008

Author: Khalid Moss

Source: Journal News

Ten minutes before 5 p.m. on Thursday, May 1, the tiny waiting room of Reach Out Medical Clinic, 25 E. Foraker St., began to fill. By 5:15, only standing room was available to patients arriving for the five o'clock grand opening of Dayton Mercy Society's Muslim Free Clinic — the first Muslim-sponsored free clinic in Ohio.

Yan Ping He, who works in a Dayton Chinese restaurant, came to the clinic complaining of neck pain. The petite Asian woman didn't speak much English and left the talking to her friend, Charles Roach.

"I spent two or three months in China and have gotten to know a lot of Chinese people here in Dayton," Roach said. "I used to work at Kettering Hospital and when Yan needed to find a clinic for the uninsured, I called Kettering and they told me about this place. It's a godsend for the community."

Reach Out of Montgomery County Medical Clinic, a volunteer healthcare organization founded in 1994, is one of three free health clinics operating in Dayton. Reach Out provides access to health care services for the underserved and uninsured population in Montgomery County using volunteer physicians, nurses and other health care professionals. According to the Ohio Association of Free Clinics there are 39 member clinics in 50 Ohio counties.

See also: Islam, Civic, Health