H. Jack Geiger, Doctor Who Fought Social Ills, Dies at 95

It was Freedom Summer, in 1964, when a young physician,  Dr. H. Jack Geiger, answered the clarion call from a young Mississippi physician, Dr. Robert Smith, to come to Mississippi to provide healthcare to freedom riders who had come to register African Americans to vote.  While here, he became aware of the generations of African Americans who had no access to healthcare, and after an all night meeting in a Greenville, MS hotel, Dr. Geiger, Dr. Smith,  Dr. Count Gibson, and a few others emerged with a commitment to establish “neighborhood health centers.”  With funding from President Lyndon Johnson’s newly-formed Office of Economic Opportunity, the first two health centers were opened, one which was located in Mound Bayou, MS.  And thus was the beginning of the community health center movement, which now includes over 1300 health centers across the United States.

We at Delta Health Center are grieving the loss of this healthcare giant and are grateful for the contributions he has made that has led to millions of Americans having access to quality, affordable healthcare.