I had the good fortune of meeting the director of the Family Planning Clinic of Martha's Vineyard, Brenda Grandizio, in April. It is always a good day for me when I get to meet the individuals behind the island's amazing non-profits and witness their enthusiasm as they describe the work they do. It was no different with Grandizio as she toured me through the Clinic, which operates under the auspices of regional non-profit Health Imperatives. Watching her beam with pride as she showed me a new exam table or basket of free condoms was my first hint that the Clinic might be a very special place.
She told me that every patient has an intake interview before the appointment and an exit interview after the appointment. That means not once, but twice, a patient gets to have a conversation and ask questions of Clinic staff while fully dressed. (Because, you know, having a conversation about your private business is already easy enough, why not do it while you're shivering under a paper gown?) After your visit, Clinic staff will follow up with a call, just to make sure there are no additional questions or concerns, or to help arrange additional care that might have been recommended by the Clinic staff.
In addition to offering a full range of reproductive health care for women and free condoms, the Clinic provides reproductive health exams for men as well as a vasectomy reimbursement program funded by the Friends of Family Planning. The clinic works closely with rape crisis and domestic violence counseling center Connect to End Violence to insure that victims of rape and assault get the help they need.
Grandizio told me that a patient recently described the Clinic as like "a warm fluffy pillow." That's not something you hear people say about their OB/GYN very often. It's even rarer to hear when it's a subsidized clinic that will not turn any person away for being unable to pay. But the Clinic isn't restricted to only those needing financial assistance. You are welcome to be treated at the Clinic even when your coffers are full. They also accept a full range of insurance. Receiving a high level of service with payments you can afford will make the day you visit Family Planning a very good day indeed.
Tisbury Turkey's current campaign supports the Friends of Family Planning, a local non-profit group providing assistance to the Family Planning Clinic of Martha's Vineyard on every level. The Friends have painted walls, bought supplies, paid rent, done anything required to keep the Clinic doors open. Your shopping will help the Friends meet their current goal of paying off the Clinic's mortgage.