Town Doctor Battles Katrina's Bad Breaks

Dr. Regina Benjamin founded a rural health care clinic in Bayou la Batre, Ala., 15 years ago. Katrina's 25-foot storm surge flooded her modest office, but she's still on the job, tending to people who fall between the cracks of Medicaid and private insurance.

During a recent day's work, the good doctor patched together patients while workers tried to put her office back together.

All around the small town, which relies heavily on shrimp and fishing in the Gulf of Mexico, families were facing similar problems with flood damage and trying to move toward an uncertain future.

Dr. Regina Benjamin tends to 10-year-old Jamis Shultz.

Dr. Regina Benjamin tends to 10-year-old Jamis Shultz, one of many victims of Hurricane Katrina. Tracy Wahl, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Tracy Wahl, NPR

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