Free clinic gone, but Hometown Health of Sch’dy still there
This is regarding the Dec. 24 letter to the editor by Dr. Clifford Tepper and his wife Cynthia, “Poor of Schenectady paying for loss of the free health clinic.” The letter left readers with the impression that Schenectady’s most vulnerable children and adults have no access to good or any medical care now that the Schenectady Free Health Clinic is closed. This is simply not true.
Hometown Health Centers (HHC), located at 1044 State St., is a first-class medical center nationally recognized for its quality health care. HHC has been caring for the medically underserved and uninsured for generations. Each month, Hometown Health opens its doors to thousands of people in need. No one is ever turned away — regardless of their ability to pay.
It’s time for the Capital Region to know about Hometown Health and the exceptional services it provides. If you required primary care, comprehensive dental services, behavioral health care, or speciality services such as pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, podiatry, rheumatology, or even a pharmacy, you can find it at Hometown Health. Through 2013, HHC experienced a nearly 20 percent increase in patient visits and added more than 100 new patients every month. It is clear that Hometown Health is meeting demand for health care in an underserved community.
The [Schenectady] Free Clinic and its volunteer staff, including Dr. Tepper, provided a special service for many years. Their generosity and caring nature will not be forgotten. When the clinic was preparing to close, Hometown Health and Ellis Medicine partnered to make sure patients were transitioned into care so there would be no delay in services.
Literally hundreds of people who formerly used the free clinic are now being cared for at Ellis and Hometown Health. In fact, we are pleased to have two of the clinic’s former volunteers on staff to help bring continuity to the services.
Hometown Health exists so that Schenectady’s most vulnerable population receives the very best medical care in a warm and welcoming environment. We have been doing this for decades — and will be doing so for years to come.
The writer is chairman of the Hometown Health Centers’ Board of Directors.
Texas, N.Y. apples and oranges re hunting
I’d like to respond to Emerson Van Patten’s Dec. 27 harsh critique of Outdoor columnist Ed Noonan’s Texas buck harvest. Unfortunately, a misinformed Mr. Van Patten criticized Ed for “slaughtering” an eight-point deer at a feeding trough while sitting in a common shelter called a “blind.”
Before the harsh words began to flow, Mr. Van Patten stated, “I am not a hunter; I eat meat and I have never objected to hunting.” He then went on to paint a picture of “captive” deer being immorally harvested, stating, “I am glad to say such a slaughter could not have happened in New York, where luring deer to feeding troughs or salt licks is illegal.”
Well, Mr. Van Patten, as an avid hunter since my early teenage years, I have a few words for you. Texas and New York are two completely different geographical locations. The Adirondack and Catskill mountains of New York vary greatly from the flat, vast, deserted plains of Texas. This results in differences of behavior and traveling patterns of the animals, and in turn the tactics hunters must use to harvest them are also different.
I’d also like to point out that many ranches across the Midwest are on average hundreds or even thousands of acres in size, so I would hardly categorize these deer as “captive.” New York is different, so that’s why it’s illegal to bait up here.
In closing, I hope Mr. Van Patten and other non-hunters who feel alike will do a little more research before making such ill-informed comments. Personally, I think there was a much higher degree of “slaughtering” to produce that steak you just bought at Walmart.
Congrats on the buck, Ed. Keep up the good stories.
Soldiers have served us, keep promises to them
Imagine a wife, husband and children hearing horrible news and crying, praying as they wonder if their loved one is alive.
I am a father of a solider. I listen to the news of a Black Hawk down, six dead [Dec. 17]. Later that day, I listen to the news that Congress votes to slice military retirement benefits. I listen and know our military families listen, but Congress are you listening?
We the people must speak for people who cannot speak for themselves. We should not change the rules on human beings who swore to protect our way of life, our Constitution. These men and women served us. They put their lives on the line. Their children and spouses deserve the little benefits we promised them when they served.
I hope and pray that our Congress hears and sees that our military are giving us their finest hour every day. I hope we the people will show our military our finest hour and keep our word to them. Our greatest citizens.
Many ways to walk, and benefit from, labyrinth
Joyful thanks for Joanne McFadden’s Dec. 28 [article], “A path to well-being.”
I’m a passionate labyrinth enthusiast and have attended workshops and walked innumerable labyrinths, which are so plentiful in our area.
However, the writer omitted the fact that even the handicapped can “walk” the labyrinth. A hand-sized plaque with the labyrinth design allows a finger to trace the path.
The soothing benefits are equal for both the sick and the well person.
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