Belle Non-Profit Clinic Closing Down

Related Story

BELLE - A non-profit health care clinic will close down Tuesday, leaving hundreds of Missourians without care. The Agape Clinic worked on an entirely volunteer basis and provided free health care to uninsured citizens.

"I'm hoping that those patients will be able to access the affordable health care act," Margie Lange, nurse practitioner and executive director, said. "But knowing what I know about my patients, I'm not sure they're financially qualified. They don't qualify for Medicaid, but I'm not sure they're going to be able to afford the health care exchanges."

Missouri state law requires nurse practitioners to be in a "legal collaborative practice agreement" with a physician in order to operate. Lange says the physician she was working with sold his practice to a hospital, and the hospital decided to discontinue the agreement.

Lange hopes to reopen the clinic in the future. She is currently searching for a new physician who is willing to enter into another agreement.