After 20 years of providing medical care for the people of Guatemala and learning Spanish, a light bulb went off in Dr. Anne Ruch’s head. As she thought about the people in her own backyard who could use her help, which led her to begin volunteering on Lifeline Ministries’ mobile medical bus every Saturday morning.
Serving on the medical bus opened up a whole new world in Toledo that Dr. Ruch never knew existed; she provided medical care to the poorest people who oftentimes didn’t have transportation or money for prescriptions. “I soon realized that the reality of health care for the poorest in my own city didn’t seem much different than health care in Guatemala.,” Dr. Ruch said. She was limited in the care she could provide because the bus that served as the mobile clinic was not a full service center and had limited availability. Identifying this need, she began to research medical office space in underserved areas of Toledo and discovered a “medical desert” of sorts.
Compassion Health Toledo, the first faith-based federally qualified health center in Toledo, is set to open in the spring in a former library building on Broadway in South Toledo. Many community partners are assisting Dr. Ruch on this project. ProMedica is taking care of the building and renovations, Lark and Lupine, a local landscape company, has taken care of all of the landscaping, Treeworks has removed all the trees, the Toledo Fire Department, from the station across the street, watered all the new plants through the fall since the building did not have water yet.
Compassion Health Toledo