Many Southern California residents took advantage of the first day of a free three-day health clinic like Darryl, who at 60 years old has survived a lot living on the streets of Los Angeles.
"My whole leg and body has 39 bullets in it," Darryl said.
He said the clinic was the "work of angels" Wednesday.
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The desperate need for health care in Los Angeles was evident as the lines stretched around the LA Convention Center, where the uninsured and underinsured were able to get checked out.
Down the hall from Darryl, a woman had a tumor removed. But not all services are major operations.
"I need to check a cavity and cleaning," Mix Spirit, who was waiting to see dentist, said.
The line to see dentists was the longest, but others are also having their vision checked and receiving medical treatment.
Free medical and dental services began Wednesday at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
"The people who make the sacrifice to get here early — they get seen first," Costin Jordache, who works with the Seventh-day Adventist Church organizing the event, said.
Thousands of health care professionals and volunteers will take part in the no-cost clinic, offering services on a first-come, first-served basis from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, and from 7 a.m. to noon Friday.
Some were frustrated with the long lines, and some walked out after waiting for a too long.
Many were just grateful to finally have a solution to their health ailments.
"Oh, I enjoyed it," Jeffrey Warren, who had his vision checked, said. "I don't have a gripe at all."
Warren even got a new pair of shoes, and a massage.
No insurance or identification is required, and no appointment is necessary, other than for major surgical procedures, which required pre-surgery visits.
Free on-site services will include primary care visits, women's health services including Pap smears and mammography, consultation by medical specialists including heart evaluation, as well as gastroenterology, neurology, pulmonology, rheumatology and pediatrics.
Specialists in podiatry, immunizations, root canals, pharmacy, eyeglass fittings and examinations, and STD screenings will also be on hand.
To schedule surgical procedures, patients are asked to call (888) 447-2849.
Los Angeles residents can obtain more information at www.YourBestPathwayToHealth.org.
The event — co-sponsored by the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services — is organized by Your Best Pathway to Health, a service of Adventist-Laymen's Services Industries, in partnership with the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Adventist Health, Loma Linda University Health and other entities.
The clinic ends at noon on Friday.