BURKE CO., Ga. (WJBF)– More than 160 military reservists are providing medical clinics at no cost in Burke, Hancock, Jenkins, and Warren counties through the Department of Defense’s initiative, Innovative Readiness Training.
“So between all the branches, Air Force, Army, Navy, Marines, we come together and make it happen,” Burke County IRT site officer, Lt. Commander Tom Warner said.
No appointment, payment, insurance, or photo ID necessary to be seen.
“You don’t always get this. Not only we’re wanting to work with our fellow service people, it’s also very rewarding to work with the community, and knowing you’re making a difference in that community,” East Central GA IRT mission officer, Maj. Kim Ebel said.
They came together from all across the country. When they’re not in uniform, they work in fields from dentistry, nursing, to even a high school science teacher. And this week, they’re in rural Georgia communities providing free medical, dental, vision, and veterinary services.
“We love it,” Maj. Ebel said. “We are just so happy to be here to serve the community. It’s very rewarding for us.”
All care is comes at no cost … including medications, dental procedures, brand new pairs of eyeglasses, and doctor referrals if further care is needed.
Of all the places this initiative could’ve taken place, thanks to a grant, the focus is on us this week.
“The folks in the areas have to apply for us to come, and this site has applied each time in the last three, four years time,” Lt. Commander Tom Warner said.
It’s a win-win situation– the reservists receive valuable hands on medical training, while the community receives medical attention.
“It’s a training. A lot of us need our proficiencies maintained, and it’s a great way for us to achieve that, while serving the community,” Maj. Kim Ebel said.
“It’s a fabulous way for us to provide our own care in uniform to our own people in America,” Lt. Commander Warner said.
Clinics are provided on a first-come first-served basis through June 17 from 8 AM – 4 PM , and 1 PM – 4 PM on Sunday. Clinics are hosted at Burke, Jenkins, and Warren county high schools, and Hancock County Health Department.
Veterinary services are provided June 10 – 13 at the Burke County location, and June 15 – 17 at the Warren County location.
See the documents below for more information.