Gloucester Mathews Care Clinic celebrates 20 years of service

When Constance Davis showed up at the Gloucester Mathews Care Clinic in 2016, she had been without medication to treat her diabetes for about six months.

She had no insurance. She had stopped paying for private insurance through Marketplace after her premium went from around $400 a month to $1,000 a month.

And she didn’t qualify for Medicaid.

“It just really was discouraging enough for me to make the decision to live without medication, live without physician treatment,” she said.

Davis had heard about the Gloucester Mathews Care Clinic — which celebrates its 20th anniversary this month — and decided to stop by one day when she was feeling especially hopeless.

For six months, Davis had gone without her daily insulin injections and eye drops to treat the Glaucoma she developed as a result of diabetes.

She had reduced the number of hours she was working as a crew trainer at Hardee’s, and her two children noticed their mother’s energy rapidly declining.

“Just trying to live was a struggle for me without my medications,” she said.

From the moment she learned that she qualified for treatment at the free clinic, things turned around for the Mathews resident.

Since Davis has sensitivity to certain types of insulin, the clinic found a pharmaceutical company willing to provide special medication at no cost.

“Not only did they just go beyond measure to have those things available for me, they didn’t turn me away just because I had special medications that I needed,” she said.

Davis wonders what she would’ve done without the free clinic, which accepts patients who don’t have insurance and are at or above 250 percent of the federal poverty level.

Without it, she said, “My path was death from diabetes.”

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