Every day, hundreds of sick and injured patients walk into free and charitable clinics around the Tampa Bay area in need of a doctor.Many are suffering from chronic conditions, such as diabetes or high blood pressure. Some patients were referred to the clinics by staff at hospitals where they landed after years of neglecting to care for treatable conditions.The clinics allow the patients to pay what they can, or nothing at all. They are staffed by doctors and nurses who volunteer their time. They survive off donations and small grants.Many of the patients have jobs but they are living paycheck to paycheck. None have health insurance, either because they do not qualify for Medicaid or can’t afford private coverage. For these patients, the clinics are often their only option for primary care.
Psychiatric Hospital Sued Over Suicide
Southwest Florida’s largest psychiatric hospital is being sued over a patient who committed suicide in 2014, after an employee failed to check on him, the Naples Daily News reports. Neither the employee nor the hospital have filed responses to the lawsuit in court.
Park Royal Hospital has a history of failing to check on patients, according to the Daily News, and one employee has been sent to prison for sexually assaulting patients.
When it opened, the 103-bed hospital was championed for filling a decade-long gap in behavioral health treatment in the region.