When hundreds of people in need of health care services flock to the S.C. State Fairgrounds Friday and Saturday for SC Mission 2013 Midlands, they will be met by hundreds of people who volunteered to help them.
Most have health care experience as doctors, nurses, technicians or social workers. Some — like Chuck Lange — just offer to help in any way they can.
Lange, president of Lange Moving Systems, happened to be seated at a table with SC Mission steering committee chair Barbara Willm at a recent Lexington Chamber of Commerce meeting. Willm, vice president of community relations at Lexington Medical Center, made her standard plea for help for the mission effort.
“I’ll be happy to help,” Lange said. “I can’t write a big check, but we’ve got trucks.”
Two Lange Moving trucks and crews spent Thursday moving X-ray machines, ultrasound machines and cots from local hospitals and clinics to the fairgrounds. They’ll be back at work after the event taking everything back to the hospitals and clinics.
Community-minded companies, along with the United Way, are the heart of SC Mission, which gets no direct government funding. They build the temporary infrastructure in buildings offered rent-free by the non-profit that operates the fairgrounds. Clinical personnel volunteer their time.
That allows SC Mission to offer free care to the uninsured and underinsured. This year, medical and eye care are available. Non-narcotics prescriptions will be provided when necessary. People with dental care needs will be directed to the S.C. Dental Association’s Dental Access Days Aug. 23-24 in North Charleston.
Patients will be seen on a first-come, first-served basis from 6 a.m-6 p.m. Friday and 6 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. Each patient also will receive information about free health services in their county. No documentation or identification is necessary to receive services.