RAM serves tri-state community

Tex Turner Arena on the Lincoln Memorial University campus saw hundreds of people come through its doors thanks to Remote Area Medical (RAM) setting up shop for the weekend. The goal: to provide much needed medical assistance to under-served and underprivileged individuals who would not be able to attain care otherwise.

The entire arena floor was dedicated to various medical treatments such as osteopathic care, vision and dental work. There were even veterinarian services provided for spaying, neutering and vaccines.

According to Robert Lambert, media relations specialist for RAM, 595 people were served over the weekend with a total value of $401, 050. Over a hundred pets were spayed, neutered or microchipped.

Volunteer doctors, and doctors in training from all around the country (as well as LMU medical students) came to Harrogate to lend a helping hand.

“A lot times people ask ‘why do you only go to rural areas’ and we don’t. We actually go urban areas, rural areas — small towns — big cities, and we see a need for our services everywhere we go,” said Lambert. “It doesn’t matter what’s available in that community, there is still going to be a large amount of people that don’t have insurance coverage, they don’t have coverage that will pay for what they need or they simply can’t afford their co-pays, their deductibles and other expenses associated with getting healthcare.

And not only that, dental care and vision care are hard to come by in areas such as this one, so it’s a service that we are proud to offer.”

The dental care area took up the most space on the arena floor, by far. The dental services are the most in-demand of the RAM, according to Lambert.

The area dedicated to orthopedic care was lined with rows of dental chairs with patients in them while volunteer dentists and dental aids took care of what needed to be done. An entire wall was taken up by sterilized dental equipment and a cleaning station.

Alex Sikora, a dental student from Buffalo, New York spoke to what it’s like volunteering for RAM.

“It’s something good for us to get some experience as well as help everyone out that’s here. It’s a pretty good feeling, especially when get someone that walks out the chair pretty happy,” he said.