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Lompoc nonprofit offers free healthcare services to uninsured patients

SAVIE HEALTH.PNG
Posted at 3:52 PM, Jun 17, 2022

Savie Health says its goal is to expand healthcare access in the Lompoc Valley, while keeping its services free for all patients.

The founder of the nonprofit, Dr. Ahmad Nooristani, says there are over 41,000 uninsured adults throughout Santa Barbara County.

"I will probably be going over there later today," said Lareesa McElligot, an uninsured woman in Lompoc. "If I had known about it last week or even two weeks ago, I probably would have gone there already."

McElligot says she and her husband have been part of Lompoc's homeless community for years. She says she knows others who, over the years, have put off receiving treatment for their ailments because they weren't insured.

"Southern Santa Barbara County is really lucky to have quite a few amazing healthcare resources," Savie Health Executive Director Erin Shugart told KSBY. "However, up here in Lompoc, there is not a clinic that is available free of charge to anybody that has no health insurance."

That is, until now.

Shugart says the new site on East Ocean Avenue offers full healthcare services including primary care visits, referrals, and coverage costs for specialty care visits, CT scans, mammograms, and more.

"There is no excuse for you not to see a doctor, and we are going to take care of you, without obstacles, and free of charge. So now it is in your hand to take care of your health because we are providing you what is missing," said Dr. Nooristani.

Still, the nonprofit says its services would not be possible without help from others. Nooristani says Savie Health is a community-wide effort led by partnerships with the Lompoc Valley Medical Center, local nursing homes, and small businesses.

"Everybody has to participate and care for their own people," he added.

The nonprofit says aside from two part-time employees, the rest of Savie Health's team is staffed by nurses and physicians in the Lompoc Valley who are donating their time to provide these services to patients.

"Take advantage of this, use this," McElligot urged. "Because of everything and anything being as expensive as it is nowadays and things being rough, take advantage of what you can find in the community."

Right now, Savie Health is open for walk-ins and appointments on Fridays and Saturdays but will expand its availability as the number of patients gradually increases.