More HealthNet patients prompts demand for more volunteers, money
HealthNet of Rock County is seeing more patients, which means it's taking on greater expenses. The provider of health insurance to uninsured and low-income residents recently remodeled, which made room for a more patients. Kyle Geissler reports. You can read more in Monday's Janesville Gazette.
Donations for HealthNet of Rock County can be mailed to 23 W. Milwaukee St., Janesville, made through HealthNet’s website at healthnetofjanesville.org or by calling (608) 756-4638.
JANESVILLE An expansion and renovation at HealthNet of Rock County has brought in more patients, and with them has come more expense.
HealthNet earlier this spring was $10,000 over its 2010-11 budget.
Half the spending was by pharmacist Mike Dow, while the rest paid for lab work and X-rays, said Jean Randles, executive director.
HealthNet provides primary health and dental care to the completely uninsured and low-income residents of Rock County.
A fundraising campaign launched in May under the slogan “Mike Dow is in the doghouse’’ raised $9,500 in less than three weeks, Dow said.
Even so, Dow continues spending money HealthNet doesn’t have, and the fiscal year doesn’t end until June 30.
Since a $218,500 expansion and renovation was finished in January, HealthNet has enrolled 45 to 55 new patients a week. The increase has resulted in more medication being dispensed and more physician clinics, Randles said.
“We’re just trying to meet the needs of Rock County patients,” she said.
“The more patients we see, the more X-rays and lab work has to be done,’’ Dow said.
Regardless of what happens in medical care, there will always be people who fall through the cracks, Dow said.
That’s why the number of those seeking medical care at HealthNet will only continue to grow, he said.
Randles hopes the fundraising campaign will continue to bring in money.
Compounding the financial pinch is a $3,200 reduction in a Community Development Block Grant and the loss of a two-year, $40,000 Batterman Foundation grant.
To compensate, Randles said, HealthNet will have to operate more efficiently, rely more heavily on the Patient Assistance Program run by pharmaceutical companies to provide free medication to people who can’t afford to buy their medications, reach out to the community for more financial support and look for other grants.
“We’ll make it and work harder next year with our dedicated staff and volunteers, who remain committed. Yet, for us to be able to sustain the number of new patients enrolling, we need additional volunteers—both medical and nonmedical,” Randall said.
This includes dentists, pharmacy technicians, nurses and clerical.
“There are volunteer opportunities for everyone,” Dow said.