Free medical clinic renamed to reach people in need

Johnstown, Cambria County, Pa. – A free medical clinic in Johnstown and Somerset is rebranding to reach more people in need. The clinic, formerly called the Johnstown Free Medical Clinic, is now named Highlands Health: Laurel Highlands Free & Charitable Medical Clinic.

The clinic has served low-income, uninsured or under-insured people living in Cambria and Somerset Counties for the past 20 years. Now, workers hope changing the name and mission will allow the clinic to expand and reach others in need.

“We’re looking forward to expansion, new services, new opportunities, and reaching lots and lots of patients who deserve our assistance.” Rosalie Danchanko, Highlands Health Executive Director.

The clinic offers check-ups, screenings, testing and medication for free. The clinic also offers a clean needle exchange program and Narcan training and distribution.

“Between the services: medical, pharmaceutical and wellness and then the needle exchange and the Narcan, it really does benefit the community more than people realize,” said Kayla Clarr, the communications director for Highlands Health.

The clinic’s executive director, Rosalie Danchanko, said the goal is for the clinic to earn status as a Federally Qualified Health Center Look-Alike to accept third party insurance payments, which could help the volunteer and donation-based organization stay afloat and grow.

“It’s an opportunity for receiving sustainable income,” Danchanko said.

In 2017, the clinic served more than 1,000 people: one percent of the uninsured population in Cambria County. Clinic workers want to reach many more people in need living in the Laurel Highlands. They plan to reach out to rural parts of the counties and look into offering a mobile clinic. Eventually, they hope to expand services into Bedford County, too.

“We want to get into those communities and be there for the people,” Danchanko said.

To learn more about Highlands Health services offered in both Cambria and Somerset Counties, visit the clinic’s website or call: 814.534.6242. The Highlands Health Johnstown office is located at 340 Main Street, Johnstown, PA 15901.