State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C, I - Schenectady) today announced that he has obtained a $75,000 state grant to assist the Schenectady Free Health Clinic.
“I’m pleased to once again provide a hand to this volunteer-based organization that performs so many good works for the people of Schenectady County. It takes a special kind of medical staff to do this type of work for free,” said Senator Farley.
Senator Farley noted that the program provides valuable health care services to uninsured residents. It also helps people in obtaining jobs by providing them with free pre-employment physicals. “This is a great program, and I’m proud to have sponsored legislation that made clinics of this sort possible, and to have pried loose this badly-needed funding toassist the Clinic. We are helping the helpers,” said Senator Farley.
“The Clinic, started about seven years ago, enjoys total support(both monetary and volunteers) from all segments of our community. We livein a very caring community, which continues to support this clinic becausewe care about our vulnerable neighbors. We are especially thankful toSenator Farley for his continued support,” said Mardy Moore, Chairman ofthe Clinic.
“Our over 2,600 patients depend on the Clinic as a health carelifeline. We need to raise $550,000 yearly to maintain the Clinic. The fact that this community -- with a combination of government, foundationand individual giving -- can achieve this every year is a real accomplishment. This grant from Senator Farley makes all the differencewith this year’s budget,” said William Spolyar, Clinic Executive Director.
Senator Farley’s involvement with the Schenectady Free Health Clinic dates back to 2002 when he sponsored legislation authorizing the creationof this Clinic. In 2006, another Farley-sponsored measure made theSchenectady County pilot program permanent, and in 2008 Senator Farley sponsored the law which expanded the program statewide.
Senator Farley has previously obtained several grants to help supportthe program, including $20,000 in 2004, $15,000 in 2006, and $350,000 in 2008. This year’s $75,000 grant was obtained using unspent allocations from previous fiscal years. In 2007, then-Governor Eliot Spitzer had eliminated Department of Health funding for the clinic.
The Schenectady Free Health Clinic (officially known as the Volunteer Physicians Project of Schenectady, Inc.) is one of an increasing number offree health clinics nationwide that have been established by volunteer health care providers to meet the needs of their communities. Staffedthrough volunteers, the Clinic provides free, comprehensive health care tothe low-income, uninsured adults in Schenectady County who have no other source of medical care. An estimated 18,000 uninsured persons reside in Schenectady County.
The Clinic has provided tens of thousands of physician visits, laboratory tests, and prescriptions to uninsured residents of Schenectady County. To contact the Clinic, you may either call 344-7067 or by mail at 600 Franklin Street, Suite 205, Schenectady, NY 12305.
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