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The dental area of the CareNow free medical clinic is a picture of perpetual motion at the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Robert Abbot, 77, receiving free dental care, said, "Never used these services before, very grateful to be able to."

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

East Los Angeles resident David Salinas, 53, receives free dental care on the first day of the free clinic.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Jerri Johnson, 6, gets a vision check.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Help in smoking cessation is one of many services offered at the free clinic.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

The dental area provides a reclining chair for patients.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

The dentist's chair was the first stop for many on the first day of the CareNow free health clinic Thursday at the Los Angeles Sports Arena. About 5,000 people are expected to be treated during the clinic, which continues until Sunday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Volunteer caregivers prepare to go to work before the doors are opened on the first day of the CareNow free health clinic at the Los Angeles Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

A dental patient prepares to open wide.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

An event official gives instructions to people waiting outside the Los Angeles Sports Arena for the clinic to open.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Thousands of people line up just to be issued a wristband for admission to the CareNow free clinic to be held Oct. 20-23 at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Brenda Bryant sleeps while Stephanie Cade watches the line as they wait to be issued a wristband for admission to the CareNow free clinic to be held Thursday through Sunday at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Thousands of people were already in line by dawn Monday as they tried to be sure to get a wristband that will gain them admission to the CareNow free clinic when it opens Thursday.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Thousands of people seeking free medical care wait Monday to be issued wristbands in front of the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Catharine Joseph was first in line. She's a former assistant school nurse who lost her job with the Los Angeles Unified School District and now is seeking free medical care.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Organized by CareNow, the clinic will run Thursday through Sunday and will be staffed by cardiologists, dentists, pediatricians and other medical professionals.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Paris, in stroller, and Leeloni Williams were among the 3,000 people in line Monday morning at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

Sarah Pineda, a laid-off Washington Mutual bank worker, covers her face from the cold while she waits to be issued a wristband for the free medical clinic.

PHOTOGRAPH BY: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

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Free medical care clinic opens at Sports Arena

Hundreds of volunteers filed into the Los Angeles Sports Arena early Thursday morning for the first day of a massive clinic that will offer free care by doctors, dentists, optometrists and others donating their services.

The clinic, organized by L.A.-based CareNow, will run through Sunday and expects to treat roughly 5,000 patients. About 3,000 were waiting in line, some since Sunday, when the clinic opened.

One of those patients, Arsie Taylor, 65, said she has Medi-Cal but no dental insurance and had not been to a dentist in about three years.

“It’s a good opportunity for people who don’t have insurance,” she said.

Taylor sat down at a registration table and a nurse asked her when she last had a mammogram.
“I don’t know,” she replied. “I want to get a mammogram too.”

Read more from Times staff writer Anna Gorman.

8 Comments

  1. October 17, 2011, 1:20 pm

    […] site: Long lines form for chance at free medical care – Los Angeles Times Tags: california, entertainment, flying, health, japanese, our-work, photo-attorney, politics, […]

  2. October 17, 2011, 5:50 pm

    Is this were our country is headed for basic needs-food, clothing, shelter, healthcare, jobs.

    By: tessamay4@yahoo.com
  3. February 3, 2012, 3:46 am

    No everything fine.. we need millions more immigrants. Diversity is our strength trust me.

    By: dx20t@gmail.com
  4. February 19, 2012, 11:08 am

    Dam shame is it not . this maybe our future.

    By: a2weeman45@yahoo.com
  5. October 16, 2012, 12:53 pm

    I once received dental implants in phoenix , which was part of a dental awareness program that was held there. Reading this reminds me of that time, since this type of programs give opportunity to people who have been seeking for dental services.

    By: RyanDonovan89
  6. October 22, 2012, 1:26 pm

    I am hoping that the dentists in charleston sc would host a similar event because for me, it's a very helpful event in providing proper treatment for those who bad dental health. It's also for those who are seeking for treatment, yet does not have enough money to pay for the services.

    By: CarolineKnight
  7. October 24, 2012, 1:04 pm

    I wnder if operations like these includes porcelain veneers sydney procedure. Urban poor people needs this and I hope they will consider.

    By: Millan Elliot
  8. October 26, 2012, 10:29 am

    It would be nice to see more of this going on in our society today. This would open up a lot of opportunities for people with dental problems and can't afford the dental services. My cosmetic dentist in tucson has been thinking about organizing a similar event, but his main problem is the fund that will be used to do so.

    By: Martin Rubbles

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