RAM is well know within the VA healthcare community. Clinics are held in tents, trailers, and the Wise County Fairgrounds’ livestock stalls. Lines are legendary. People sleep in cars and on the open ground for days to get a chance to have teeth pulled, rudimentary diagnostics, and the scant amount of education and management of chronic conditions that time allows. Efforts by medical and dental staff are herculean and all volunteer. Patients are nearly all uninsured (which does not at all mean they are not working if you must ask).
This is an access issue, people! RAM was developed to provide care to remote villages in South America. Over 60% of RAM clinics are now in the US. It is the primary source of healthcare for thousands of people in Southwest. WaPo did some great reporting on it this year, and now we’ve got an independent film coming out.
The WaPo article is titled Misery that Shouldn’t Exist. Cough Medicaid expansion cough cough. More to come on the politics, the policy, the people.
The struggle is real.