Samaritans Now

Samaritans Now is a medical relief program of volunteer health care workers sponsored by the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts. We welcome physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, pharmacists, psychologists, social workers and clergy of all faiths to volunteer for our programs.

Samaritans answer Christ’s call to relieve suffering and help people in need. On short term missions, we provide medical care for people, especially the poor, in areas devastated by natural disasters. Samaritans Now was organized to bring help and hope to the victims of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and on the Gulf coast. We plan to expand our outreach opportunities to other areas in need such as Africa in the near future. We welcome people of all faiths to work on our volunteer teams. There is an ongoing need for physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners and physician assistants.

“For I was hungry, and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me… Truly I tell you, as you did it to one of the least of these who are members of my family, you did it to me.”
-Matthew 25

Our Mission

  • We serve by providing medical care for people in need, especially the poor. We bring medical help and hope to victims of disasters.
  • We believe in faith in action. Samaritans answer Christ’s call to relieve suffering and help people in need.
  • We are an interfaith group. We invite people of all faiths to work on our programs.
  • We prepare volunteers through training in medical relief work.
  • We offer opportunities for meaningful service to experienced and inexperienced medical relief volunteers.
  • We support the Millennium Development Goals. We work for peace and justice. We believe in the integrity and dignity of each person. We support access to health care for each person. We focus our efforts on helping the poor, especially women and children. We support the eradication of poverty and hunger.

Where We Work

Short Term Mission Opportunities – New Orleans and the Gulf Coast

The Gulf coast needs our help! Louisiana and Mississippi remain devastated after Hurricane Katrina. Many people have lost family members, homes, jobs, and medical insurance. They feel overwhelmed by their problems and needs. Meanwhile, the local capacity to meet these needs is reduced. Approximately 70% of the primary care physicians who evacuated New Orleans and the Gulf Coast have not returned.

The Episcopal Church is working to improve access to medical care in these areas. In New Orleans, St Anna’s Episcopal Church is operating a free clinic with a medical van in the 9th ward. In Biloxi, the Lutheran Episcopal Disaster Response (LEDR) is providing a free medical clinic in a local church.

Samaritans Now is sending a team of medical workers, mainly physicians and nurses, to work in Louisiana or Mississippi for one week each month.

  • Each group will leave Boston on Sunday and return the following Saturday.
  • New Orleans mission groups are open to doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners
  • The team will work in a mobile medical van in the 9th ward and stay in housing provided by the Episcopal Diocese.
  • Participants on the New Orleans mission trip are responsible for their individual expenses. Airfare costs approximately $350 to New Orleans. Food and lodging cost approximately $150 per week. You are encouraged to ask your parish for support.
  • Mississippi mission groups are open to all health care workers.
  • The team will work in the Bethel Lutheran free clinic in Biloxi and stay at Camp Biloxi.
  • Participants on the Mississippi mission trip are responsible for their individual expenses. Airfare costs approximately $350 to the Gulf coast. Food and lodging at Camp Biloxi cost approximately $100 per week. You are encouraged to ask your parish for support.
  • Participants on a mission trip are responsible for obtaining a temporary professional license to practice their specialty in either Louisiana or Mississippi. Information for obtaining these licenses is included after the application on this website.
  • People of all faiths are welcome to work on our relief teams
  • Expenses are tax deductible contributions, as this is a charitable program.

Partners

Samaritans Now believes that any medical relief efforts should be based on local needs. We develop partnership with organizations which are providing free medical care for the poor based on the local needs. Our partners also arrange food and lodging for our medical volunteers, as well as insuring their safety.

In New Orleans, St Anna’s Episcopal Church is our local partner. They are operating a free medical clinic with a medical van in the 9th ward. To learn more about their program, go to their website: www.stannanola.org.

In Biloxi, the Lutheran Episcopal Disaster Response (LEDR) is our local partner. They are supporting a free medical clinic in Bethel Lutheran church. To learn more about their program, go to their website: myweb.cableone.net/LESMBETH.

Licensing

Each health professional is responsible for obtaining licensure before traveling to the Gulf Coast. Follow the link below or call the appropriate board directly to arrange temporary licensure.

Louisiana Mississippi
Louisiana Board of Medical Examiners
630 Camp Street
New Orleans, LA 70130
Tel: (504) 568-6820

Louisiana State Board of Nursing
5207 Essen Lane
Baton Rouge, La 70809
Tel: (225) 763-3570 or (225) 763-3577 Fax: (225) 763-3580

Louisiana Board of Pharmacy
5615 Corporate Blvd., Suite 8-E
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70808-2537
Tel: (225) 925-6496 Fax (225) 925-6499

Louisiana Board of Social Work Examiners
18550 Highland Road, Suite B,
Baton Rouge, LA 70809
Tel: 225.756.3470 or 800.521.1941 Fax: 225.756.3472

Louisiana Board of Dentistry
365 Canal Street
Suite 2680
New Orleans, LA 70130
Tel: (504) 568-8574 Fax: (504) 568-8598
Mississippi Board of Medicine
1867 Crane Ridge Drive, Suite 200-B
Jackson, Mississippi 39216
Tel: (601) 987-3079 Fax (601) 987-4159

Mississippi Board of Nursing
1935 Lakeland Drive, Suite B
Jackson, MS 39216
Tel:: (601) 944-4826 Fax: (601) 364-2352

Mississippi Board of Pharmacy
P.O. Box 24507
Jackson, MS 39225-4507
Tel: 601-605-5388 Fax: 601-605-9546

Mississippi Board of Social Work
350 West Woodrow Wilson Avenue, 3rd Floor Suite 3635
Post Office Box 4508 • Jackson, MS 39296-4508
Tel: (601) 987-6806 Fax: (601) 987-6808

Mississippi Board of Dentistry
600 East Amite Street, Suite 100
Jackson, MS 39201-2801
Tel: (601) 944-9622 Fax: (601) 944-9624

Contact Us

If you are interested in joining a Samaritans’ mission trip, please fill out an application and fax your completed application with a copy of your professional license to 617-451-6446 or send it to:

Samaritans Now Relief Program
Task Force for Gulf Coast Partnerships
Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts
138 Tremont St
Boston, MA 02111

Please contact us at gulfcoast@diomass.org or call 617-482-5800, ext. 349, if you have any questions.

If you cannot give your time and talent for a Samaritans Now mission, please consider donating funds to support this relief program. All contributions are tax deductible. Send donations to:

Samaritans Now Relief Program
Task Force for Gulf Coast Partnerships
Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts
138 Tremont St,
Boston, MA 02111