By Andrew Kassouf | The Cuestonian
Dr. Ahmad Nooristani has brought a much needed service to San Luis Obispo County: a free health care clinic.
A three-year process has become a reality for Nooristani and the San Luis Obispo community. Opening its doors on Oct. 13 the Noor Free Health Clinic Foundation has already shown success with both the patients and the volunteer physicians.
The Noor Foundation is a volunteer, non-profit organization providing high quality free health care to people who do not have health insurance in the community.
What is it that would drive someone to open a free health care clinic during this down economy?
According to Nooristani, it was passion and a way to give back to the community that he is a part of.
“There’s a huge need for it. As a physician, I saw a need to give back to the community. Especially since about 30 percent of the people in our community are uninsured and unfortunately, most of them go medically unseen due to the lack of being insured.”
But why have a free health clinic in San Luis Obispo?
“SLO is a good starting point, and since I live here, it’s a great opportunity to give back to the community,” Nooristani said.
In order for the clinic to offer service, they must rely on donations and other forms of help from the community. “Private donations and grants, but mostly donations from private businesses and individuals is where the money needed to keep the clinic operating comes from.”
A patient must be 18 years or older, which means it’s open to almost anyone and everyone in need of health services. As of now, the Noor Foundation Health Care Clinic offers a number of procedures. Every fourth Thursday an ophthalmologist will be on site for free eye exams and free glasses.
They will also be offering procedures for physical therapy, nutrition, mammograms, colonoscopies, ear, lung, kidney, brain and nose exams. They’re also expecting to start having classes soon for depression and anxiety management. “We’re going to try and add different specialties,” said Noorisani.
This is a huge benefit for students and others who cannot get insurance companies to cover them if they have some sort of pre-existing condition or just can’t afford any of the insurance plans offered by insurance companies. Since the Noor Free Health Clinic Foundation is free, it is very important for them to get as many volunteers as possible to help out in any way they can.
“Anyone from the nursing programs at Cuesta and Cal Poly are welcomed to volunteer, and anyone ranging from computer technicians to nurses and physician assistants are more than welcome to volunteer at the clinic,” said Noorisani.
“Since it is a free health care clinic, there is no pay, but great for experience. And the ability to give back to the community is a great reason alone to want to volunteer.”
A big plus side is that the Noor Free Health Care Clinic is one of San Luis Obispo’s largest non-profit, all-volunteer-run establishments.
“We are one of the largest facilities in the county that is strictly volunteer operated and run, with 500 volunteers. It would be nice to see that number continue to grow.”
The Noor Free Health Care Clinic is located at 1428 Philips Drive Suit B-4 SLO, CA 93401 and hours of operation are Fridays and Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Nooristani graduated with a medical degree at Ross University of Medicine and researched in Internal Medicine at the Atlantic City Internal Medicine Medical Center.
Want to make an appointment? Call the clinic at (805) 439–1797.
How to help
Tax-exempt contributions can be made to the Noor Free Clinic through slonoorfoundation.org.