WAUKESHA, Wisc., (SPECTRUM NEWS)- Carroll University is partnering with the Waukesha Free Clinic to provide medical services to people in the county who are under-insured or uninsured.

Carroll University is Wisconsin’s oldest higher education institution. The free clinic at St. Joseph’s is the oldest free medical clinic in the state. Carroll’s nursing, PA, PT and OT students will work directly with free clinic volunteers to care for this vulnerable population. Carroll’s nursing program has been ranked number one in the state by RNCareers.org

“There’s a need nationwide for more healthcare providers,” says Carroll’s president Cindy Gnadinger. “By partnering with this free clinic, our student have a direct line for clinical experiences and that’s what prohibits us and many higher-ed institutions to expand programs and admit more students.”

The Waukesha Free Clinic also provides coaching for patients, in terms of healthy lifestyle changes.

“We may help that individual work on other aspects of their life that may help to improve their overall well-being, such as nutrition or their housing situation,” says Waukesha Free Clinic president Shelley Watters. “We’re the only free clinic in the area that has a homeless outreach nurse that specifically helps take care of that patient population as well.”

The new clinic building is on West Wisconsin Ave. in downtown Waukesha. Funding for renovations, spearheaded by Carroll, came partially via CDBG grants. The free clinic’s portion came directly from local donations.

The Waukesha Free Clinic has been in operation since 1977. It provides about 2,000 services annually.