Category: Patient Stories

John

John

John sought care from the Pocatello Free Clinic in March of 2013. He has no insurance and hasn’t worked for several years due to severe neurological symptoms caused by a subarachnoid cyst. His symptoms resolved after having a brain shunt inserted. A few months after this procedure, John came to our clinic complaining of nausea, headaches, dizziness, and back pain. Upon examination, Jeff Williams, DC, could not find John’s drainage tube.

Dr. Williams immediately called his friend, Dr. Morgan, a neurologist, and scheduled John for the next day. X-rays showed that John’s drainage tube was not connected to his shunt and had settled in his pelvic cavity.

Dr. Morgan was willing to do the surgery at no cost but, John was not able to get scheduled for surgery immediately since he had to go through the process to get the fees waived from the hospital and the anesthesiologist. He came to our clinic weekly for chiropractic care and as his symptoms worsened, he saw several volunteer physicians. We were able to help him pay for anti-nausea prescriptions for several months.

We are happy to report that John is now recovering from brain surgery and an additional surgery to remove the drainage tube from his pelvic cavity. He reports that he is feeling fantastic and is so grateful for all the individuals and organizations that helped him make it to this day.

John wrote us the following in a card: “Thank you guys for working so hard in my behalf to help me with my back and brain shunt. Y’all are mortal angels sent from heaven. You are exceptionally awesome. I can’t find words to express my gratitude to you for what you have done. Thanks a bajillion.”

Matt

Matt

Matt came to the Pocatello Free Clinic (PFC) in January 2013 hoping to be seen that day by a doctor. Matt did not have medical insurance and was homeless and living in a van. We normally operate off a waiting list but luckily, Dr. Bill Woodhouse was there that day and made time for him. Matt had several complaints including uncontrolled diabetes, diarrhea, severe weight loss, neuropathy in his feet, decreased appetite, and a large basal cell carcinoma on his lower lip.

A week later, Matt saw Dr. Naeem Rahim for a follow up visit. Dr. Rahim took a picture of the basal cell carcinoma on Matt’s lip and sent it to Dr. Earl Stoddard, a local dermatologist, along with a plea for help. Dr. Stoddard responded that he would be willing to remove it free of charge and scheduled Matt for an appointment immediately. Dr. Rahim also contacted Dr. Charles Evans, a gastroenterologist in Pocatello, who was willing to check Matt for colon cancer at no charge. Matt was overwhelmed with gratitude.

Dr. Stoddard successfully removed the cancer on Matt’s lip and said it was the most extensive procedure he has ever done. It is amazing to see the difference in Matt after he had the surgery. He is a much more confident person.

Matt has continued to come to the PFC for follow up, mostly because he needs help paying for prescriptions. Most recently he was referred to Dr. Brandon Wilde, a local podiatrist. Dr. Wilde treated diabetic ulcers on Matt’s feet at no cost.

Matt has qualified for disability due to the medical records from our clinic, and will soon no longer need our assistance.

Matt has benefited more than any other patient from the coordinated efforts of concerned volunteer healthcare providers. His life has literally been changed, and he received services totaling over $30,000 from the Pocatello Free Clinic network.

Matt said this, “If it wasn’t for this place, I wouldn’t have made it. I have so many medical problems. The Pocatello Free Clinic is saving my life every day.”

BJ Stensland, Executive Director Aid for Friends

BJ Stensland, Executive Director Aid for Friends

The only viable choice for clients staying at the Emergency Shelter is the Pocatello Free Clinic. The clinic has been an integral part of Pocatello’s health service providers for over 40 years and many of our low-income households depend on the clinic for help with their medical and dental needs.

Anonymous Patient

Anonymous Patient

I get paid by the hour (as a delivery driver) and work when my employer calls me up. I don’t have any insurance. My bad teeth and infected gums caused me so much pain I couldn’t take the jobs when my boss called, and almost got fired. But the dental help I got from the PFC like extractions, antibiotics, and fillings, helped me work regularly again