The Volunteer Voice
August 16th, 2019
VIM's Upcoming Events
Save the Dates
Back to School Backpack Giveaway
On Wednesday, August 14th, the clinic held a Back to School Backpack Program. Over 50 children received backpacks, notebooks, folders and additional school supplies. The goal of the free giveaway was to assist with decreasing the stress of back to school costs for patients and their families.

Special thanks to Marie Thomas, Frances Feudale and Tom Kosmala for their contributions of supplies and monetary donations towards the program.
Thank you to our friends at the Citizen's Voice for providing coverage of the Back to School Backpack Giveaway. Click the link below to read the full article.
Mondays at the Market
Our staff has enjoyed attending Mondays at the Market presented by the Wilkes-Barre Health Department & Luzerne County Medical Society. This week's theme was Exercise Fitness Day . Information was provided to attendees on various exercises and nutritional eating. Stop by on Monday, August 19th and say hello at the final market of the summer .
Visit to the Geisinger's Fresh Food Farmacy
On Thursday, August 15th, Kelly Ranieli , VIM's Executive Director, and April Lennon , Social Care Coordinator, spent time at Geisinger's Fresh Food Farmacy in Scranton. The facility opened this past spring and Geisinger hopes to expand to Luzerne County in the future.

With 1 out of 10 U.S. adults living with Type 2 diabetes and 1 in 4 being food insecure , Geisinger has stepped in with a new approach on how to treat this epidemic. The Fresh Food Farmacy program utilizes “food as medicine” to treat patients living with Type 2 diabetes. To participate in the program, patients must be over 18, have a Type 2 diabetes diagnosis and a hemoglobin A1c level of 8.0% or higher at the time of enrollment. Clients do not have to have Geisinger insurance or utilize a Geisinger PCP to enroll in the program. Members must participate in a six week educational class to learn how to manage diabetes and sustain a healthy lifestyle. Participants receive menus, recipes and enough food to feed their entire family for two meals a day, five days a week. The Fresh Food Farmacy has had a positive impact on the people it serves and patients have seen significant improvements with HbA1c levels and overall lifestyle changes.
Patient Success Story
On Thursday, August 15th, Kelly Ranieli, Executive Director, received a call from Kathy, a previous patient of VIM that now has health insurance. The female black/African American patient was originally referred to the clinic by a local nonprofit that she worked for but was unable to offer her medical insurance . She received multiple services for a number of years at VIM.

The patient called to express her gratitude for the staff and volunteers. She stated, "I want everyone involved with VIM to know I was always treated with respect . The nurses and doctors are amazing, beautiful people . The clinic is very clean and professional. VIM did so much for me! As God as my witness, if I win the lottery, money will go to VIM. I thank God for the clinic . They made me feel like the most important person on earth . "
Welcome to Our New Resident & Students
La'Kesha Francis , a Geisinger Family Medicine Resident, spent time seeing patients in conjunction with Dr. Frances Feudale , VIM's Medical Director, at the clinic last week. Upon completion of her program, La'Kesha is interested in working with Doctors without Borders . She would like to practice in family medicine with a focus on global health and prevention.
Casondra Smicherko is a pharmacy student from Wilkes University that began her advanced pharmacy practice experience at the clinic this week. She is interested in practicing in a community pharmacy or working as a clinical pharmacist upon graduation. Casondra is happy to complete her clinical rotation at VIM - "This is a great opportunity to help the local community." She has been employed at Josie's Italian Ice for the past eight years and enjoys spending time with her dog, Tucker.
Christine Scavone is a pharmacy student from Wilkes University that also began her advanced pharmacy practice experience at the clinic this week. She is interested in practicing in a hospital setting or ambulatory care pharmacy upon graduation. Christine loves to travel. She spent time in Italy in March and hopes to travel more in the near future.
Students Love VIM
Katelyn Buyarski , a King's College Physician Assistant student, completed her clinical rotation last week. She said, " I loved getting to see so many aspects of medicine and getting to see the whole system. In this way, we are able to learn so much. I also appreciated all of the responsibilities I was allowed to do. I really loved my time here . Thank you to all of the staff so much!" Katelyn has already received a job offer from Geisinger Danville in their ETN department.
Pictured above are Katelyn Buyarski & Darcie Schaffer,
VIM's Dental Clinic Manager
United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA Presents at Clinic's Monthly In-service
On Tuesday, August 13th, Sarah Bodnar and Katie Reilly from the United Neighborhood Centers of NEPA presented at the clinic's monthly in-service. They spoke to the staff and volunteers about the various services their organization has to offer which include child and adult daycare centers , advocacy programs , behavioral health counseling and chronic pain management workshops.
Healthy Smiles Program
Visits Local Preschools
Katie the Kangaroo has been bouncing all around town! The dental clinic staff have been busy presenting the "Healthy Smiles for a Healthy Start" Program to local summer camps and day cares. As we look ahead to the upcoming school year, the staff are preparing to visit many after-school programs to continue to educate children on the importance of their oral health and visiting a dentist .
JCC Camp in Dallas on Monday, August 5th
Building Blocks Learning Center in Mountain Top on Tuesday, August 6th
King's College Early Learning Center in Wilkes-Barre on Friday, August 9th
I'm Big Now Learning Center in Shavertown on Monday, August 12th
Maven Project Educational
Teleconference Sessions
In conjunction with the clinic's partnership with the Maven Project , educational teleconference sessions will be provided by physicians across the country. Each session will be from 12:00pm to 1:00pm in the clinic's conference room and is open to volunteers and providers.
The upcoming teleconferences sessions are:

  • Tuesday, August 20th - EKG Interpretation of Common Outpatient Findings

  • Tuesday, September 3rd - Diabetes Management

  • Tuesday, October 1st - Chronic Kidney Disease: A Primer for Primary Care Physicians
If there is a topic you would be interested in learning about, please reach out to Dr. Frances Feudale, VIM's Medical Director, at .
The Gap Between Rich And Poor Americans' Health Is Widening
An article recently published by the National Public Radio details the findings from a survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention regarding the gaps in America's health care system based on socio-economic status.

Key findings from the article include:

  • The health of the lowest income bracket is declining substantially.
  • Income was the biggest predictor of differences in health outcomes.
  • Low education is attributable to the same number of deaths as heart attacks.

Click the link below to read the full article.
Save the Date
Upcoming Educational Community In-Services
Learning about other Luzerne County  community agencies in order to refer patients  is one of the many ways that VIM provides case management services. All in-services are from  9:00 am to 10:00 am  and are held at the clinic. If you would like to join us for the next presentation, please  RSVP to April  at  or call 570-970-2864.
 Tuesday, September 10th
Identifying the Signs & Symptoms of an Eating Disorder
Presented by Dr. Jennifer Buckwash, PsyD, LPC
Let's Get Social!
Volunteers  in  Medicine 
 190 North Pennsylvania Avenue
Wilkes-Barre PA 18702
Phone: 570-970-2864 | email: