It is a dark, wet July evening and hundreds of men, women and children are outside patiently queuing to receive free medical care.
The huge crowd desperate for medical attention are not from a third-world, war-torn country but hail from 14 states across the U.S. and have travelled to Wise, Virginia for care.
With no health insurance or too little insurance, they have no alternative but to get a numbered wristband and wait their turn to be seen by doctors, nurses and dentists inside - not a hospital - but a marquee.
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Hopeful: With little or no medical insurance, people desperate for free care wait to receive a wristband number before they can be treated at the Remote Area Medical (RAM) clinic in Wise, Virginia on Friday night
Huge operation: 1700 patients from 14 states turned up to receive free treatment, including dental care, at the charity's 647th expedition
Desperate: For people with no medical insurance, RAM clinics provide a rare opportunity to receive basic medical care, including eye tests
Over three days last week, 1,700 patients received treatment for everything from cancer screenings to root canal surgery at the Remote Area Clinic (RAM) temporarily set up in the southwest Virginia town.
Without the free treatment provided by RAM, these people may never receive care, the charity’s website says.
With thousands of people to attend to, RAM operates out of simple marquees full of medical equipment and lines of collapsible hospital beds.
Although undeniably tight for space, the mission is clearly organised with military precision boasting separate sections for dental, eye, and basic medical care.
Hundreds of volunteers get to work performing eye tests, providing fillings and removing teeth as well as routine screenings and cervical smears.
Roll up, roll up: A placard advertises the RAM clinic in Wise, Virginia which served 1,700 people from 14 U.S. states who cannot afford medical insurance
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