Physician returns to nonprofit he helped found |

Physician returns to nonprofit he helped found

John Hanrahan, the physician who almost 10 years ago helped found a clinic for the uninsured, has returned to the organization while it finds a new leader.

Hanrahan arrived as the nonprofit People’s Health Clinic’s interim executive director on Wednesday. He replaces Andrew Sipherd. Hanrahan said Sipherd worked for the clinic for 2 1/2 years and returned to for-profit work.

Hanrahan expects he will serve in the interim role for between four and six months. Hanrahan practices family medicine. He is 47 years old and lives in Silver Creek.

"This was always a passion for me. As a doctor, I just get really frustrated when people can’t get even basic health care," Hanrahan says.

Hanrahan was part of the team of doctors that started the nonprofit in 1999. He left the organization in 2005 but returned to the board of directors in 2007. Hanrahan expects to work 20 hours per week while serving in the interim role.

The People’s Health Clinic serves patients without health insurance. It moved into a location at The Yard off Kearns Boulevard in early July. The clinic does not require payment from its patients, but it asks them to give $15 per visit.

Patients are seen Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 2 p.m. until 8 p.m. Hanrahan says the hours could expand later.

The clinic is involved with Intermountain Healthcare as the company builds a hospital and medical complex at Quinn’s Junction. Hanrahan expects the clinic to move to the Quinn’s Junction location in late summer 2009.

While he holds the interim position, Hanrahan expects to revisit the clinic’s strategic plan, but he does not offer details about potential changes. He says, however, the organization will require a larger staff once it moves to the new location.

The clinic’s reach is widening, with Hanrahan reporting a jump in patients in 2008 from the previous year. According to Hanrahan, the clinic had seen 2,180 patients through the end of July, up about 30 percent from the same period the year before.

The clinic ended 2007 having seen 3,013 patients.

Hanrahan is campaigning for a seat on the Summit County Council. A Democrat, he is competing with Republican Tom Hurd for one of the five seats on the panel, which will replace the current three-person County Commission in January.

Hanrahan previously started Hope Alliance, a nonprofit international humanitarian group. He says access to health care is a basic right. In a prepared statement, Hanrahan says the space at The Yard is preferred to the organization’s former location and he is pleased with the growth of the nonprofit.

"From driving our original mobile clinic, to seeing patients, to serving on the Board, I have always felt (the organization) is one of the preeminent organizations in our community," he says.

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