Serving a community seems like a large task, unless the people encouraged to serve take it one patient at time. On October 23, 1986, the Free Medical Clinic treated its first patient in the basement of First Presbyterian Church in Winchester, Virginia. 14 patients were served on that first night. In 2014, 1,052 patients were served.
The clinic began as an outreach to provide care to those in need. Gratefully many are willing to serve. A growing need for care pushed the Free Medical Clinic out of the basement location in 1989, moving services to a more permanent home in the old firehouse on Cork Street, also a First Presbyterian Church building. For just $1.00 per year in rent, the Free Medical Clinic could offer patients medical care, referral services and assistance for medications.
Support from the community and the need for expanded space to serve more clients, encouraged a move to the Our Health Kendall Community Campus in 2003. The Clinic’s current home in the Shockey Building provides ample space for patients to receive medical services and on site pharmacy benefits Monday through Friday. The downtown Winchester location provides patients with access to public transportation, and encourages the Free Medical Clinic to conveniently refer patients to many other services on campus, including the Dental Clinic of NSV; which was once a service of the Free Medical Clinic and has been acting as its own agency since 2008.
In 2011, Free Medical Clinic celebrated 25 years of service through a successful campaign which celebrated the many organizations, volunteers, providers and community members who support and promote the Clinic. With their support, the Free Medical Clinic achieves its mission to provide those in need with the gift of health care.