Good Samaritan Health Centers Named July 2013 Small Business of the Month

The Mission of the Good Samaritan Health Center of Gwinnett is to demonstrate the love of Christ by providing affordable health care services to the indigent and working poor. Our Goals are to 1) provide quality low cost primary healthcare services to the uninsured, 2) decrease the demand of the uninsured for non-emergent medical services on local emergency rooms, and 3) provide a venue for medical professionals of the Christian community to serve a marginalized population. Our Purpose is to meet the medical and spiritual needs of our patients. We invite the public to join us in prayer in our lobby each Friday morning at 7:30AM.

Good Samaritan of Gwinnett provided 5860 patient visits to 2687 unique individuals during 2012, a significant increase in contrast to 2011 when the clinic provided 3139 patient visits to 1863 unique individuals. Life to date, we have provided the community with more than 35,000 medical appointments; we expect to deliver more than 8000 patient visits this year. As a safety net clinic, we believe that if not for us all or most of the 2687 unique individuals we treated during 2012 would have gone without healthcare or sought expensive treatment in the emergency room, treatment that would have been provided at the public’s expense.

Good Samaritan of Gwinnett is not a free clinic; patients pay a flat fee for the healthcare they receive, although the fee typically represents about half the actual cost of the services provided and less than 25% of what Medicare would pay for similar services.

Our business is dual purposed; first and foremost we are a Christian medical ministry, but secondly, we are a training site for students of the healthcare professions. Through our relationships with fifteen academic partners, we train physician, physician assistant, nurse practitioner and pharmacy students, providing them with hands on experience working with culturally diverse, medically complex and uninsured patients. In 2012, we trained 106 healthcare students. Each day 20-24 people staff the clinic to serve up to 45 patients.

Several agency partners (Goodwill Industries and Gwinnett County Department of Family and Children Services, for example) collaborate with Good Samaritan of Gwinnett. We receive volunteers from work readiness and employment re-entry programs that place unemployed individuals at the Center. Such volunteers work at the clinic in order to gain industry specific experience and a professional reference to better prepare them for competitive employment. These volunteers fill the roles of receptionist, medical assistant and bilingual interpreters.

Gregory E. Lang, PhD, has 25 years’ experience in the healthcare industry, is a six time New York Times best-selling author, a rabid fan of authentic ethnic foods, and has resided in Gwinnett since 1987. He and his wife live in Duluth where they entertain friends and two daughters who return home for respite when tired of the challenges of adulthood. The Good Samaritan Health Center is his first foray in the non-profit sector and, he says, the best assignment of his career.