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  • A LITTLE INFORMATION ON PROJECT ACCESS                                      

    PATC is a breakthrough initiative approved by the Tarrant County Medical Society (TCMS) Board of Directors to provide healthcare access to the uninsured and working poor in Tarrant County.  TCMS has led the charge in the life of PATC, and since September 2011, PATC volunteers have provided Tarrant County’s in need with over $4.2 million in donated healthcare access. 

    Approximately 350 patients have been approved for the program and have had surgical and/or other specialty procedures completed by utilizing the charitable gifts of a network of existing voluntary providers and collaborative partnerships.  PATC’s mission is to expand health care access and improve health outcomes for low-income, uninsured residents of Tarrant County, utilizing the charitable gifts of a network of existing voluntary providers and collaborative partnerships. 





    Target Population

    1. Individuals residing in Tarrant County
    2. Uninsured (including Medicaid, Medicare, CHIP, JPS Connection, or VA Benefits)
    3. Income at or below 200% of Federal Poverty Line (FPL)
    4. Working poor, or the alleviation of a health condition would allow them to work (i.e. vocational impediment)


    Project Access Provides the following services:

      Donated Medical Services (Project Access Tarrant County)

    • Establish medical homes/primary care physician (PCP) for each patient
    • Physician Specialists visits/access
    • Hospital access for operations and procedures
    • Ancillary services: anesthesia, laboratory, pathology, and radiology services


    Care Coordination (In Partnership with Catholic Charities)

    • Case management
    • Navigation services for accessing public benefits
    • Transportation
    • Translation
    • Financial education
    • Pharmacy benefits enrollment 



    Specialties Available for PATC Patients


    Cardiovascular Disease

    Colon & Rectal Surgery







    General Surgery

    Orthopedic Surgery



    Physical Med & Rehab

    Vascular Med & Surgery



    Hand Surgery

    Allergy & Immunology



    Conditions That Cannot Be Addressed

    Chemotherapy & Cancer



    Emergency Medicine

    Serious Psychiatric Issues

    Substance Abuse








    Remember Why You Became a Physician

    The American Medical Association principles of medical ethics states:


    "A physician shall recognize a responsibility to participate in activities contributing to an improved community."


    However, finding viable outlets that serve the community effectively can be difficult.  This is why the concept of PATC is so wonderful:

    •Project Access Tarrant County acknowledges, quantifies, and coordinates physician and health care provider charity care, and spreads that care as equitably as possible.

    •Project Access Tarrant County makes it easier for physicians who are already caring for the uninsured to better manage and coordinate care.

    Physicians can volunteer to see patients in their own practice or can be connected to an area charitable clinic.  Each physician is in control of the number of patients s/he will see in a given year as well.  All commitments are appreciated; no number is too small. 

    Physician Quotes

    Paul Cho, MD, Neurological Surgery

    Dr. Cho feels that “we are only as strong as the people and community that surround us…Project Access is an exemplary means for the physicians of Tarrant County to serve our fellow citizens and to contribute to the health and welfare of all who surround us.”

    Michelle Marcincuk, MD, Otolaryngologist

    “Working with Project Access has been very rewarding.  Over the years, providing charity care to those who need it has always been something that makes me feel good about my work. However, as a surgeon, no matter how much you want to care for uninsured patients, without the cooperation of hospitals, labs, radiology facilities, and other doctors, it has traditionally been a huge challenge to provide surgical care for these patients. Now with Project Access, we have a network of willing individuals and facilities that makes this process easy and seamless. In my experience alone, I have been able to provide comprehensive care that substantially improves patients' quality of life, and, in a few cases, has provided life-saving care for uninsured patients. Multiply that by all the doctors and facilities in this network, and this program has made a monumental contribution to this community. I am proud to be a part of this effort.”

    R. Todd Richwine, DO, Family Medicine & Hospitalist

    “I volunteered to become part of PATC to help patients who otherwise would not have resources available for their health care.  With PATC’s coordination, my first patient referral to PATC is back caring for her family, working toward her degree and a healthy member of Tarrant County.  PATC allowed me to be part of a team of primary care, specialists, hospitals, labs and other health care providers without any of the administrative burden to myself or my staff that would come with trying to do this on our own.  I have provided charity care, but was limited on what I could do without the resources PATC has arranged.”

    D. Luke Shellenberger, MD, Otolaryngologist

    “I thoroughly enjoyed being able to help provide necessary care for a PATC patient.  The patient was extremely pleasant and she was excited and grateful to PATC.  Working with PATC was seamless, and I will be happy to continue to provide my services to those who need it in Tarrant County.  I know that I cannot make a massive change locally or internationally, but to the person that I help, it is massive.”

    Jim Norman, MD, General Surgeon

    “The process was easy especially since PATC had already arranged for the hospital and anesthesia services to be donated to the patient.  Scheduling the hernia case was like scheduling a patient with insurance.  I did not have to coordinate with the hospital and anesthesia to donate their services as PATC had already made those arrangements.”

    If you wish to volunteer with Project Access, please click on the link below.  The volunteer sign up form can be filled out online and will be sent directly to Project Access. 





    If you can’t participate, please donate!






    For further opportunities to give to Project Access Tarrant County, please visit the following pages: 


    ntxgd  amazonsmile charitymotors







    We would like to recognize the organizations responsible for funding PATC, partnering with PATC, and those physician groups whose practices have 100% physician participation.




    Our volunteer physicians and their office staff are the reason that Project Access is able to help the patients who have nowhere else to turn. We recognize them to show how grateful and appreciative we all are of their generosity.







    PATC e-newsletter Monday, June 15, 2015

    Donor Bridge

    Charity Motors







    for allowing PATC to be one of four organizations chosen to be beneficiaries of PMR Charity's annual golf tournament that was held at Waterchase Golf Course on Thursday, May 14, 2015.  The other organizations included Gill Children's, Helping Restore Ability, and Adaptive Training Foundation.  We had a great day of hosting golfers at Hole #17 where they got to spin for placement at the edge of the green and a chance to enter the raffle to win a Jag-for-a-Day.  The Jaguar was graciously donated for the day by Autobahn Motorcar Group of Fort Worth, with John Ingebritson, sales person for Autobahn Jaguar, representing the dealership at our hole.  Although muggy, the rain held off and we even got a little sunshine! 



    Thursday, June 4, 2015, Project Access, Cornerstone Cataract Clinic, and Community Eye Clinic held their first annual Ophthalmological joint fundraiser at Live Oak Music Lounge on Magnolia.  It was a fantastic evening filled with Jags donated for the night by Autobahn Motorcar Group of Fort Worth and jazz music by UTA Jazz Ensemble. Guests were encouraged to buy raffle tickets to win a chance at driving a Jag-for-a-Day.  The lucky winner was Dave Sattler of Alcon!  Mr. Sattler retired from Alcon this past year. He was integral in making sure Community Eye Clinic was established and continues to be a supporter. The night was meant to fundraise for these three wonderful organizations, but also it was to highlight how we work together to take care of the eyes of the indigent in Tarrant County.  Lorene McCoy, Director of the Cornerstone Clinic says, "Our missing link when the clinic began was pre- and post-op eye care. And that's where the Community Eye Clinic plays a major role for our clinic...All 3 of these clinics work closely to serve the community. And we could not do this without the help of generous supporters like you."








    Jonathan Warminski, MD

    Ophthalmologist, Retina Center of Texas


    Are you originally from this area?  If not, where?

    I'm originally from a small town in the panhandle of Texas, White Deer. It's a little farming community 45 minutes northeast of Amarillo


    Who or what influenced you greatly growing up?

    Growing up on a farm, I learned quickly the value of hard work and the importance of responsibility. As I've moved away from there, those are things that I have always kept in mind.


    Where were you educated?

    I attended Texas Tech University for undergraduate school, majoring in Food Science. From there, I moved to the metroplex and studied at UT Southwestern for medical school. I did an internship in Internal Medicine at Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas and then returned to UT Southwestern for both residency in ophthalmology and then fellowship in vitreoretinal surgery.


    Why did you decide to become a doctor?

    I never grew up with the thought of becoming a physician, I just wanted to get an 8-5 job and have a family. During college, I was doing R&D for a food manufacturing company and, while I enjoyed it, I felt called to something service oriented and found medicine. It provides constant challenges along with the opportunity to affect people's lives.


    What is your favorite thing about being an Ophthalmologist?

    Being able to work with patients to treat their vision problems is very rewarding. It's a scary prospect to consider losing vision since we, by our nature, primarily interact with the world visually.


    How did you decide to join PATC?  Have you always been charity minded?

    After joining Dr. Jawad Qureshi in practice, we talked about our role in the community and how we can be involved. He was already been a part of PATC and I joined right away.


    How many patients do you see who are without insurance?  Has that number increased?

    It's hard to say how many, the number isn't as important as being available to help.


    Please explain how working with PATC is different than trying to schedule and see charity patients on your own.

    PATC allows us to have a coordinator for patients to take the burden off of our staff. With partners at Community Eye Clinic and Cornerstone, it allows comprehensive eye care for the patient without barriers that we face when not working with PATC.


    How was your first PATC patient experience?

    My first patient was one of my own that I needed PATC's help to get to surgery. He is a hard-working guy that ended up with diabetic retinopathy causing bleeding in his eye and left him unable to work. I treated him with every clinical means I could, but he needed surgery. PATC stepped in and worked with the hospital so we could get the procedure done. He's now back to work and is the most appreciative patient I have.


    Why do you think that PATC is a good program to have in place in Tarrant County?

    Not only is PATC good, it's essential for our community. There is a gap between the care provided by the JPS system and the insured. PATC fills that gap and allows for care to those patients who are truly in need.


    Why do you think it is a good idea for other Ophthalmologists to join PATC?  How would it be beneficial to them, their practice, and their office staff?

    I strongly encourage all physicians in the area to join PATC. This partnership allows for greater services for patients than can be provided by any one physician or practice alone.  We all have the ability and desire to help those in our community, but we often lack the means. The more people can read and hear about PATC the better; keep up the good work!



    "Words are not enough to express my gratefulness and appreciation for what PATC has done to help me. I was diagnosed several months ago with a torn rotator cuff. The diagnosis came after more than a year of pain in my shoulder and arm, loss of function, and many, many sleepless nights."


    At the time of her diagnosis, "June" was 58 years old, living in Arlington with her daughter and grandson.  She was an employee at Walmart but says that, "I did not have healthcare coverage nor the financial ability to get the medical attention to fix my shoulder.  I thought that I was doomed because with my condition, I knew that I would not be able to do my job; I would not be able to care for myself; and my lifestyle would spiral down.  In a nutshell, the results would be devastating for me and my family.  But PATC was heaven sent.  I was referred to Dr. Jay Pond, who has operated on my shoulder and provided medical care with his staff, including physical therapy."  Dr. Pond is an orthopedic surgeon at the Arlington Orthopedics Associates, P.A. and has been a volunteer with PATC since 2013.


    June was referred to PATC by Mission Arlington, which provides a free-of-charge medical clinic, one of the few resources of its kind in Arlington.  The clinic has seen to the medical and spiritual needs of the indigent people of Arlington for over 20 years.  They provide quality medical care as well as education to promote long-term health.  This fits in well with PATC's vision that all Tarrant County residents have a medical home and access to a continuum of care.  By the end of June's enrollment in PATC, she was established at Mission Arlington for all of her primary care needs.


    "My experience with PATC is one that I will never forget, and forever cherish.  It is one of those experiences in life that restores one's faith in humanity and in the goodness in the world.  The staff at PATC was helpful, courteous, communicative, and professional.  They explained all the steps in detail.  I was treated with respect and dignity.  I was connected with the physician expeditiously.   Dr. Pond and his staff were cordial, professional, knowledgeable, and caring.  I am such a believer in the program and to the vast value it provides the community.  I plan to volunteer as soon as I get better so I can give back and be able to participate in contributing to the community and be a positive influence in somebody's life, just as PATC was in my life.  Not one day passes by without me praying for PATC staff and all the collaborators who make this world a better place."



    See PATC patients' stories on our YouTube Channel by clicking here!

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    PATC / Tarrant County Academy of Medicine | 555 Hemphill St. | Fort Worth, TX 76104 |
    Phone: (817) 632-7531 | Fax: (817) 632-7532 | Email:







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