According to the Kane County Health Department, 11.8 percent of county residents have no health insurance.
Free healthcare clinic in Aurora is seeking volunteers to continue making mission possible
By Tom Siebert
AURORA, Ill., Oct. 1, 2021 — Jack Sharratt felt an aching void in his life after recently retiring from a 25-year career as a chiropractor.
But the Batavia resident has filled that emptiness inside by volunteering at Aurora Christian Healthcare, a nonprofit clinic that provides free medical, dental, vision, orthopedic, and chiropractic services to those who need them.
“These people are the working poor,” said Dr. Sharratt, who serves patients at the clinic for four hours every two weeks. “They are our neighbors. They build our homes, do our landscaping, and produce goods in our factories.”
Aurora Christian Healthcare is a holistic clinic that provides prayer, healthcare, and counseling to those who are not covered by Medicaid, Medicare, the Veterans Administration, or the U.S. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act––colloquially called “ObamaCare.”
According to the Kane County Health Department, 11.8 percent of county residents have no health insurance. That figure equates to approximately 63,254 individuals without medical coverage and 23,352 persons in Aurora alone.
Many people seeking help at the free clinic are suffering from chronic health conditions such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and poor dental hygiene, Dr. Sharratt said.
“My patients are lovely people,” he asserted. “They are hard-working, devoted to their families, non-pretentious, and appreciative of their care.”
The clinic is located at 61 S. Broadway, in the building that formerly housed Mission Possible, which shut down in 2020 after eight years of offering free healthcare to the uninsured community.
Aurora Christian considers itself the heir to Mission Possible, but in order to continue providing help to the local sick and suffering, it needs more healthcare professionals to volunteer at the clinic.
The clinic is seeking “mission-minded” physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, dentists, hygienists, chiropractors, ophthalmologists, and other healthcare providers, according to Traci Dunne, a licensed social worker and vice president of the 501(c) nonprofit organization.
Healthcare professionals must be licensed in Illinois and willing to devote a minimum of three to four hours of service per month, she stated.
Also needed are volunteers for the welcoming team, whose members schedule appointments, make reminder calls to patients, and check them in when they arrive at the clinic.
Occasional needs include help with mailings, photography, graphic design, information technology, cleaning, painting, and construction, Ms. Dunne added. And Spanish-speaking translators are always appreciated.
Aurora Christian Healthcare is funded by donations, grants, gifts, and a few foundations.
Those interested in donating, volunteering, or learning more about the clinic may call (630) 586-6392 or visit their website at https://www.aurorachristianhealthcare.org/.
For Dr. Sharratt, providing free healthcare is its own reward.
“I get my needs met as a doctor and as a human being,” he said. “I make a difference.”
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Tom Siebert has a BS in journalism from the University of Illinois and many years' experience as a writer/editor. As seen in: Chicago Tribune, Medium, The Beacon News, Barrington Courier-Review,Patch, South Florida Sun Sentinel, San Diego Citybeat