Frequently Asked Questions
Most patients have questions before their first visit. Below is a list of questions most frequently asked. If you are not seeing an answer to your question on our website, please contact us.
*Please note that uninsured adults must become an established patient through necessary paperwork prior to making their first appointment.
We are a free clinic that provides primary medical care to eligible patients, just like any family practitioner or internist – but free of charge. We treat uninsured adults who reside or work on Johns, James & Wadmalaw Islands; Folly Beach; Meggett; Ravenel; Hollywood; or Walterboro – including those who serve Charleston’s Hospitality Industry. Specific income guidelines apply in accordance with Federal Guidelines set each year.
Are You Eligible? Take Our Easy Quiz.
All of our volunteer physicians are licensed in SC and maintain annual Continuing Medical Education, including specialty certification as needed. Our medical staff are trained in UpToDate and have access to highly specialized telemedicine consults via the national MAVEN network. In addition to over 19 sub-specialty providers, our in-house staff consists of both currently practicing area physicians as well as retired professors from leading medical universities. Through volunteer collaboration and partnerships, we are able to offer our patients free, high quality routine primary care; low or no cost prescriptions; dermatology; psychiatry; reproductive health; chronic disease management and more.
The Free Clinic is free to eligible patients. We are able to see and treat patients at no cost due to our volunteer medical staff and generous donations from individuals and organizations throughout the community. Prospective patients must have all required eligibility documents together and be accepted as a new patient prior to making an appointment.
Download and Complete Our Patient Application.
Adults between the ages of 18 and 65 who:
- Reside or work on Johns, James & Wadmalaw Islands; Folly Beach; Meggett; Ravenel; Hollywood; Walterboro, or serve Charleston’s Hospitality Industry.
- Have a household income according to the 299% income level guidelines (Check Here For Household Size Income Eligibility)
- Do not have health insurance, Medicare, Medicaid or VA medical benefits. Read more about eligibility here.
The United States Department of Health and Human Services establishes the federal poverty level. Barrier Islands Free Medical Clinic serves adults who earn at or below 299% of this level.
Every patient goes through the same process for determining eligibility to receive services. Download and Complete Our Patient Application for a detailed overview of our new patient checklist as well as additional resources. This provides you with all the information you will need to apply for eligibility. You must have all necessary documents ready prior to submitting your patient application.
We strive to make the eligibility process as easy as possible. We we want to make sure that uninsured residents and workers of the Barrier Islands and their connecting communties are receiving our care. If we determine you are not eligible for services, we can help direct you to other free patient care clinics throughout the Charleston area.
Monday – Friday 9:00 am to 4:00 pm we offer our regularly scheduled clinic hours by appointment only. When necessary, we will also try to accommodate same-day visits.
Doctors, nurses, translators, staff, diabetic meters and strips, lab tests, X-rays and screening mammograms are free. Some specialty referrals are free.
The Free Clinic is a 501( c)(3) non-profit organization, operated by an Executive Medical Director and support staff. It is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.
The Free Clinic is supported by charitable contributions from individuals, community and religious organizations, fundraising events and grants from private foundations. The Free Clinic receives no state or federal money. We are staffed by volunteers who offer their time freely to care for patients.
Barrier Islands Free Medical Clinic relies on donated time from retired and active licensed physicians and nurses, as well as interpreters and office volunteers. Many additional volunteers are needed during special events such as our annual Golf Tournament and Lowcountry Wine and Beer Festival. Marketing professionals, photographers and database experts are just some of the other volunteer skills we need. Volunteer roles include:
- Nurses and nurse practitioners
- Spanish/English interpreters
- Social workers and psychologists
- Administrative and operational support
- Fundraiser support