IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. — Walking into HealthReach Community Clinic, Carmellee Chamberlain feels like more than just a number.
“Anybody who comes in, they’re welcomed,” Chamberlain said. “Regardless of any situation, you come in, everybody is super nice.”
The clinic is something of a hidden gem, providing free health care to residents without insurance in Iredell County.
Chamberlain, who is uninsured, has relied on her doctors here for nearly 20 years. This includes a major surgery in the fall of 2020, when she slipped in a ditch days before Thanksgiving.
Like hundreds of HealthReach patients, Chamberlain is falling through the cracks. She makes too much money to qualify for health care assistance, but not enough to pay for insurance herself.
“We’re seeing people from all walks of life,” says Health Reach Director Dr. Sabrina Niggel. “People who have always been employed and never had to get care from a free health clinic are now coming here.”
To qualify for treatment at HealthReach Community Clinic, patients must be uninsured, a resident of Iredell County, and their income must be less than 250% of the federal poverty level.