Students help organize free dental, vision and medical care March 18-19

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Remote Area Medical, a free mobile medical clinic, will come to Putnam County from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, March 18, and 6 a.m. to noon on Sunday, March 19, at Cookeville High School.

The Tennessee Tech University pre-professional health science students are doing a terrific job coordinating with numerous local charitable organizations, said Janet Coonce, chemistry department professor and Chem- Med faculty advisor.

Last year, RAM s Putnam County tour served 878 patients, conducted 478 dental procedures, 328 vision exams and 184 general medicine exams for a total of $543,467 in value of care. RAM expects to serve even more patients this year.

RAM clinic is open for all ages, races and nationalities, said senior Antonia Susnjar, Chem- Med club president and this year s RAM promotion chair. We are excited to provide an opportunity for quality medical care to the community of Putnam County.

RAM currently has 667 volunteers registered but is still actively recruiting more opticians, dentists and optometrists. Volunteers can fill out an application at Volunteers will be provided breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Volunteering at RAM is unique, said Madison Dunn, Putnam County RAM clinic hospitality chair. You are there volunteering to help change lives, but actually your life is changing too.

Insurance or identification cards are not required for medical service and interpreters will be present. RAM operates on a first-come, first-served basis but will see all patients until the last one leaves.

People are in desperate need of care, and for many RAM is the only way they can see a doctor or a dentist, said Stan Brock, founder of RAM. We see people from all walks of life at our clinics and ask no questions other than where it hurts.

In the past, patients have arrived Friday evening and slept in their cars to secure their spot. Patients awake to breakfast and a number that holds their place in line until they can begin to be seen.

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