A Ministry of Health: Dr. Charles Moore is on a quest to close Atlanta’s health gaps
Like so many patients who find their way to the HEALing Community Center in Southwest Atlanta, Robin Swinks came with a sense of desperation. She needed a doctor who would listen to her story—someone to help her forge a way through the healthcare labyrinth.
So on a Wednesday evening, she sat on an exam table while clinic founder Dr. Charles Moore gently felt her nose and peered inside her nostrils. About three months earlier, Swinks, 37, had been in a serious car accident that left her with a severe concussion, memory loss, and a shattered nose. The headaches subsided, the memory came back, but so far the insurance company had refused to fix her nose.
“They make it seem like I’m a bored housewife who does not like my nose,” she said, her voice high-pitched and strained. “I have made it clear that I cannot breathe.”
Moore, an ear, nose, and throat doctor, nodded. Swinks’s nose had shifted to one side, and fractures had left a hump and S-shaped crook. Inside, the septum, which separates the nostrils, had been crushed. It was blocking one nostril by about 80 percent and the other by 50 percent.
“That should ultimately be approved by your insurance,” he assured her. “I’ll get several folks involved to help clear it and get it done.”
There was no bill or co-pay for the exam, just some instructions about how to register at Grady Memorial Hospital before he met with her again. Moore specializes in surgery for craniomaxillofacial trauma and anterior cranial base tumors—and in helping people overlooked by the healthcare system.
“I love the mission of this place. It’s great work they’re doing,” Swinks said as she left. “His whole mission is speaking for people who aren’t spoken for....”
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