Gov. Beshear announces program to increase healthcare access in parts of Eastern Kentucky

Published: Jun. 8, 2021 at 1:05 PM EDT
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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WYMT) - Many healthcare services will be easier to access for people living in parts of Eastern Kentucky next month.

Tuesday afternoon, Gov. Andy Beshear announced the launch of the “Operation Gateway Kentucky Innovative Readiness Training Medical Mission”, which aims to provide free general medical, optometry, and dental services to uninsured and under insured people living in a five county service area.

A group of military medical professionals will be operating clinics through this program in Bath, Menifee, Montgomery, Morgan and Rowan counties roughly between July 10 and July 21.

The program is sponsored by the Department of Defense and the Gateway Area Development District, and also uses $138,000 from the Appalachian Regional Commission.

ARC federal co-chair Gayle C. Manchin believes the mission will help Kentuckians while also providing real world training for military personnel operating the clinics; saying both issues are important moving forward, “As our Appalachian communities recover from the impacts of COVID-19 and the ongoing substance-use disorder crisis, increasing access to health care and ramping up training of health care personnel is imperative,”

GADD predicts this mission will be similar to a 2019 IRT medical service mission in other Eastern Kentucky counties, which aided more than 1,800 Kentuckians and saved more than $1.1 million in healthcare related costs.

Services will be available on on a first-come, first-served basis.

More information on the exact locations and operations of these clinics will be announced at a later date.

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