Mission and Background
The Broad Street Clinic was founded in 1993 by county physicians and other concerned citizens as a private non-profit, free health clinic serving the adult residents of Carteret County and surrounding areas. Its mission is to provide access to medical care for the uninsured low-income population in our community. The Clinic was originally based in Beaufort, hence the name. We are now located on North 35th Street in Morehead City, near Carteret General Hospital.
The Clinic is open Monday through Thursday. Monday and Tuesday mornings are patient days when volunteer Doctors, Nurse Practitioners, and Nurses work up and see patients. In our “pre COVID” days it was not unusual for seventy patients to be seen on a first come, first served basis between 8:30 and frequently as late as 8 pm each Tuesday. Today we are working to find our new normal without compromising care while continuing to follow the CDC guidelines.
Thursday is Pharmacy day when our wonderful volunteer Pharmacy manager, Dick Gray, frequently arrives before 6 am to prepare 500 prescriptions for on average 150 patients. Pharmacy hours are from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm and then 1:30 to 4 pm. We carry no Class II narcotics; the strongest medication we carry is 800 mg of Ibuprofen.
A Dental bus run by the North Carolina Baptist Men’s Association and staffed by local volunteer dentists and hygienists comes to the Clinic on an average of once a quarter and sees about 15 patients each visit.
We employ three part-time patient advocates who meet with the patients, collect their financial data, file it with the pharmaceutical companies, order and re-order their needed medications and take care of their non-medical needs to make certain the patients are compliant with the requirements of the DAP program. We have a team of six pharmacists that work with Dick to make sure all pharmacy needs are met. We employ one part-time bookkeeper who also keeps the office stocked and well-oiled as well as our Clinic Coordinator who works as a liaison for all our patient referrals, as well as a few other things. We have an executive director, Lou Johnson, who does just about everything else and then some at the clinic.
Although the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has enabled some low income individuals to obtain health insurance, it is also true that the need for the charity care given by The Broad Street Clinic will continue. Many of our patients fall into a “coverage gap”– unable to afford insurance and not qualifying for a subsidy. Further, they may qualify for one of the many exemptions and not have to pay the fine for being uninsured.