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Remote Area Medical clinic returns to Rockingham County Fairgrounds

 Dental exams will be one of the services available at the clinic this weekend, May 6-7.
Dental exams will be one of the services available at the clinic this weekend, May 6-7.

A free healthcare clinic returns to the Valley this weekend. WMRA's Randi B. Hagi reports.

Remote Area Medical, or RAM, is a nonprofit that provides free dental, vision, and medical services at pop-up clinics across the country. This Saturday and Sunday, they'll be set up at the Rockingham County Fairgrounds.

VICKI GREGG: We're going to have medical exams, women's health, also mammograms will be available, and Narcan training and Hepatitis A vaccines. Dental, we'll be doing our cleanings, fillings, extractions, dental X-ray, and then vision is the complete eye exam … and eyeglasses made on-site.

Vicki Gregg is a clinic manager. Services are provided on a first-come, first-served basis, and patients will have to choose between getting dental and vision services based on time restraints.

Gregg said that, outside the RAM clinics, their patients may have access to basic healthcare through Medicaid, but –

GREGG: Oftentimes, dental and vision services are not covered. … Or, even if someone has insurance, and they may have dental and vision services, being able to afford the copays. … Vision, you may be able to get your eye exam done, but then your glasses are going to run you $400 or $500.

The fairgrounds parking lot will open by 11:59 p.m. Friday night, and the clinic doors open at 6 a.m. Saturday. No ID is required.

Randi B. Hagi first joined the WMRA team in 2019 as a freelance reporter. Her writing and photography have been featured in The Harrisonburg Citizen, where she previously served as the assistant editor; as well as The Mennonite; Mennonite World Review; and Eastern Mennonite University's Crossroads magazine.