GRMC and GRMF are pleased to announce additional medical equipment for Guadalupe Clinic
Guadalupe Regional Medical Center (GRMC) and Guadalupe Regional Medical Foundation (GRMF) are pleased to announce a recent augmentation to the care provided at Guadalupe Clinic and of the generous local contributions and many interesting connections that provided the “vision” for this opportunity.
The Guadalupe Clinic was established by GRMC in 2013 as a transition from the previous Christian Clinic. The Christian Clinic was founded in 1986 by Henry Moore, MD as a part time evening clinic on the TLU campus to serve local residents who otherwise could not afford medical care. It continued to be staffed and operated by local Seguin physicians and community members who volunteered to support this outreach. Today, the Guadalupe Clinic provides primary care access to adult patients, 18 years and older, who are unfunded or unable to afford primary care chronic illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, congestive heart disease. The clinic recently expanded its scope to include women’s health care and well women exams.
Dr. Henry Moore was also instrumental in recruiting Richard Fleming, MD, to establish the first ophthalmology clinic in Seguin in 1975. For over 40 years, Dr. Fleming continued to provide eye care and surgery to thousands of area residents until he passed away in December of 2017. As part of his estate planning, he provided a generous donation to Guadalupe Regional Medical Foundation to advance the mission of the hospital.
At this juncture, Elaine Bennett, CEO of GRMF, made the acquaintance of Dr. Fleming’s daughter, Suzanne Fleming Cashen to discuss how best to use his gift and ideally how to relate the gift to his passion of eye care. One of Elaine’s first suggestions was to use the funds to provide eye care to patients of the Guadalupe Clinic, as patients with chronic disease are at high risk for eye disorders. It is well known that diabetes can have ravaging effects on the body, such as diminished blood flow to extremities like the feet. But it is not as well known that the same vascular processes that create poor blood flow in the feet can also affect the tiny blood vessels in the eyes, thereby creating sight disorders and eye disease.
Suzanne was quick to embrace that idea, as indeed she and her mother had been steadfast volunteers at the Christian Clinic decades before. Furthermore, as a Senior Sales Manager for Optos, a leading provider of devices to eye care professionals for improved patient care, Suzanne was able to take the project a step further by securing an OptoMat eye screening machine as an additional donation from the Austin-based Ultimate Eye Care clinic of Dr. Vaughn Brinegar and Dr. Victoria DeFeo. And with her connections to the local optometrists, Suzanne engaged Bree Vickers, daughter of long standing GRMF board chair Phil Seidenberger for further support of the program. Dr. Vickers then spearheaded a rotation of local optometrists to share coverage of reading the exam results for Guadalupe Clinic patients.
The full circle of generations caring for and investing in our community lives on with the new eye care services now implemented at the Guadalupe Clinic. Mandy Wright, nurse practitioner at the clinic, is thrilled that she and her colleagues can now help diagnose eye disorders for the clinic patients, many of whom have never had an eye exam. By being able to recognize these diseases early, they are able to stop advancement of the disease and/or refer for treatment. Her patients have already given great feedback about how better eyesight leads to improved quality of life, increased independence, and the invaluable joy of simply being able to see better.
GRMF, GRMC and the patients of Guadalupe Clinic, are extremely grateful for gifts such as these that make such a huge positive difference for health care in our community.
From Left to Right: Elaine Bennett, CEO of Guadalupe Regional Medical Foundation;
Tasha Montez, CEO of Guadalupe Regional Medical Group;
Robert Haynes, CEO of Guadalupe Regional Medical Center;
Dr. Bree Vickers; Suzanne Fleming Cashen