Jane Pauley clinic targets uninsured with free health fair

GREENFIELD — A local clinic dedicated to helping the county’s uninsured is hosting a free health information fair Saturday with the hope the event will remind residents of the clinic’s mission and help boost enrollment.

Leaders of the Jane Pauley Community Health Center said the clinic got off to a great start when it opened in December, but traffic has leveled off. They’re inviting the community to attend the inaugural health and family fun fair, where they will provide information about the clinic, its services and its partners, according to Nicole Mann, the clinic’s site manager.

The center provides medical care to uninsured and underinsured county residents and those on Medicaid with no access to local treatment.

Mann said her many years of working in health care in Hancock County taught her how necessary a low-cost clinic is, and she said she hoped the health fair will remind residents that the center is available to poor families.

“The need has been here for a long time,” Mann said. “It’s a blessing and has been a good thing for the community.”

The health fair will take place from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday at the clinic, 1107 N. State St. Those who attend can look forward to free food, games, prizes and a slew of information about local health care providers and nonprofits, Mann said.

While parents are navigating booths, children can take part in fun and educational activities, she said. The first 50 people who attend will receive a free bag of school supplies.

Greenfield’s Jane Pauley center is a 4,800-square-foot facility, equipped with 10 exam rooms and staffed with six employees from Hancock Physician Network, including two full-time family nurse practitioners.

The Greenfield center joins nine other Jane Pauley clinics and school wellness centers in Indianapolis, Anderson and Shelbyville.

When the clinic opened in December, it grew quickly, said Bradley Denton, a spokesperson for the Jane Pauley health care network. The facility saw hundreds of patients in its first few months, but those numbers have started to plateau recently.

Now, officials are looking to re-energize, Denton said.

Since the clinic relies mostly on word of mouth to spread its message, health fairs and free screening will be conducted as often as possible, and Greenfield can look forward to many more, he said.

The clinic has no bigger cheerleader than Hancock Regional Hospital. Chief operating officer Rob Matt said the hospital worked hard to bring a Jane Pauley center to Greenfield after seeing a large number of uninsured patients using the hospital’s emergency room.

Matt said at least three hospital departments will be in attendance at the clinic’s health fair, including the cancer center, wellness center and wound care center. Partnerships like these help the hospital gain exposure as much as the clinic, he said.

“We want them to have visibility,” Matt said of the clinic. “That’s important to us. We brought them here … and it adds to our services.”

Caitlin VanOverberghe is a reporter at the Greenfield Daily Reporter. She can be reached at 317-477-3237 or cvanoverberghe@greenfieldreporter.com.