Health Care Scarce for Many in New Orleans

Tents at Medical Recovery Week. Credit: Noah Adams, NPR. i i

A rare quiet moment among the tents at the Greater New Orleans Medical Recovery Week. About 4,000 patients received volunteer care from more than 800 health professionals. Noah Adams, NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Noah Adams, NPR
Tents at Medical Recovery Week. Credit: Noah Adams, NPR.

A rare quiet moment among the tents at the Greater New Orleans Medical Recovery Week. About 4,000 patients received volunteer care from more than 800 health professionals.

Noah Adams, NPR

Volunteer groups recently held the Greater New Orleans Medical Recovery Week. Physicians, nurses and technicians saw 500 to 600 patients a day during the event. Many who received care waited in line overnight because they had no other choice for medical and dental care.

Trailers and tents were spread out in a New Orleans East park to create a temporary medical facility.

Before Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans, Lucia Parker worked in a hospital and had medical insurance. But now that Parker's employer St. Charles General is closed, she has no job, no insurance and no care. That's why she took advantage of the Medical Recovery Week.

Dr. Teck Kim Khoo of Minnesota's Mayo Clinic came to New Orleans this week with more than 30 of his colleagues to volunteer for the service event. He said that it was a fulfilling experience to treat the people he saw in New Orleans.

During the weeklong event in New Orleans, more than 800 volunteers saw about 4,000 patients.

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