Volunteers in Medicine offers new program to support COVID-19 patients in isolation

Local News

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WSAV) – Volunteers in Medicine helps Lowcountry residents who have no other means of medical care.

But thanks to a $60,000 grant from the Community Foundation of the Lowcountry and the help of Deep Well, VIM has been able to branch out and take care of patients outside of the clinic.

Their new program, Project Isolate Safe, is designed to help people who have contracted COVID-19 but can’t afford to stay home from work.

“Some folks are working in a hands-on industry where they can’t just log in in the morning and isolate and work from home,” said Kathy Berkshire of VIM.

VIM saw the need especially for many in the food and beverage or tourism industry who count on a daily paycheck to feed their families.

Their goal, to stop the spread of COVID and help those in need at the same time.

“It is for folks that want to do the right thing by isolating because they have a positive covid test but they are at home in a situation where they may also have children to take care of or seniors in the home,” said Berkshire.

“When they call in for help, you can hear in their voice they are trying to process how am I going to do all of this. Then they are ever so grateful when we say the box will be arriving this afternoon.”

A box of covid supplies, disinfectant, thermometers, wipes provided by VIM, as well as food provided by Deep Well. All dropped off at their front door, with no contact.

“They are among the hardest hit when it comes to lost wages and unemployment many are scared and again unable to safely self-isolate,” said Ginger Allen, VIM Development director

Project Self Isolate either brings them supplies so they can stay at home and away from family who they may infect, or give someone a safe place to quarantine until they are cleared.

A simple thing that makes a big difference for someone facing down the virus, and the needs of the people they take care of.

“They are overwhelmed at first because there’s help,” explains Kathy. “Then relief that there’s help, then you can hear the fatigue, that the worry was built up. They are trying to cope with this enormous situation in the home. But we are providing a way that they really will be able to navigate through this.”

The services will be available for at least the next three months with the possibility of an extension.

To qualify:

  • You must be have received a COVID-19 positive diagnosis and live on Hilton Head Island
  • You must not have severe COVID-19 related symptoms that require hospitalization
  • You must be at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. For example, a family of four whose income does not exceed $52,400

If you are already a Deep Well client or a VIM patient who is a Hilton Head Island resident, you are qualified for the program.

For those who do qualify for Project Isolate Safe, call 843-290-3819 (for English) or 843-290-3629 (para español) for assistance.

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