The Laguna Beach Community Clinic has received a three-year grant from the United Way to support hiring a full-time family physician, medical director Dr. Tom Bent announced last week.
Bent, who has already begun the search, admitted there is a lot of competition for qualified family physicians. But he hopes that the United Way grant will “help us meet the challenge of finding the right one for the needs of our patients.”
Demands on the clinic’s services have increased in recent years because of underemployment, unemployment, and the loss of health benefits for many in the community.
Though the clinic has been able to accommodate all of its patients so far, some requiring non-urgent medical care have had to wait a month or two for appointments. According to Bent, postponing routine care can sometimes result in small problems becoming major health concerns. He emphasized that the clinic’s mission is to provide quality medical care regardless of the patient’s ability to pay.