On Wednesday evening, about 60 people from across southeast Indiana attended our First Annual Community Reception at Ivy Tech, in Lawrenceburg. We were joined by many area physicians and medical professionals. Also in attendance were Lawrenceburg Mayor Kelly Mollaun, Rising Sun Mayor Brent Bascom, President and CEO of Dearborn County Hospital Michael Schwebler, Judge Sally McLaughlin, and Melanie Douglas of Senator Donnelly’s office.
Volunteers worked most of the day Wednesday, trying to make this event a success. We were able to have the National Volunteers in Medicine Director, Marjorie Hamrell, along with Dr. Eiler, on Fox19 with Kara Sewell that morning, and then on Eagle 99.3 with Bubba Bo. Then a few members of the board took the national VIM representatives, that flew in from Vermont, on a tour of our clinic location.
After a brief reprieve, we gathered at Ivy Tech for the big reveal.
Mayor Mollaun opened the events festivities with a moving address regarding the need for the VIMDOS Clinic and referenced the nearly 45% of students in Lawrenceburg Community School Corporation on the free/reduced meal program and his heartache at knowing about 1,700 people in Lawrenceburg are uninsured.
Dr. Eiler then spoke of his experiences as a local physician of 40 years, the struggles of trying to help the underserved with hands tied by insurance companies, and the great ability that the clinic will offer to physicians to practice medicine without worrying about billing issues and time constraints.
National Volunteers in Medicine Executive Director, Marjorie Hamrell, gave a great presentation on the history and mission of the organization and lead a great question and answer session.
Trinity Episcopal Church called on VIMDOS President, Michelle Wilhelm, to read a letter from Reverend Mary Taflinger praising VIMDOS Inc. and their efforts. Ending with a donation of $4,000 towards clinic needs! We could not be more appreciative and honored. We will continue your mission to improve the health of the less fortunate in the area, hopefully for decades to come. Or until we get every single resident connected with health care that they can actually use.
Befire announcing the location, we explained that we had to consider things like ADA and HIPPA requirements, convenience for both volunteers and patients, ease of access with items like parking and public transportation. We also had to look closely at cost as we rely on donations and grants.
One location option was in Dillsboro, IN. SIEOC offered VIMDOS the use of the other half of their head start building. Although slightly closer for Switzerland county, this location would have required more capital than we have to become usable with regard to our needs.
The other option was a shared space in an Aurora medical building that was offered to us for a reasonable rate, especially considering that we have to do nothing to it to get it ready. After the facilities committee toured both locations, the decision to be made was clear.
We chose the Dearborn County Hospital medical office building for it being more affordable, readily available, and the great location. It is easy to get to and there is plenty of parking for patients and volunteers.
We are so thankful for the community outpouring of support. We want to offer a special thank you to Hollywood Casino for giving the National VIM representatives a beautiful place to stay, BleuDress Photography for doing our pre event needs, Ivy Tech for the wonderful space for the event, Dearborn County Hospital for there helping attitude, and the Dearborn Adult Center for letting us monopolize their meeting rooms. And words can not express our gratitude to Trinity Episcopal Church.