In 1987, one attorney met with one client in a hospital room at Magee Rehabilitation Hospital. From that attorney’s vision, the Legal Clinic for the Disabled was born.
Now, after 30 years, LCD has served thousands of low-income people with disabilities in the Philadelphia area. With generous support from Magee Rehabilitation Hospital, we no longer operate in one room, but across the city of Philadelphia and surrounding counties.
LCD’s partnership with Magee formed one of the first Medical Legal Partnerships (MLP) in the country. MLPs are now they are recognized as an important model to address social determinants to health that are legal in nature that affect healthcare outcomes.
The MLP is a community-centered healthcare and legal services delivery model that works to improve the health and wellbeing of low-income, vulnerable populations by addressing unmet legal needs that impact healthcare outcomes. LCD attorneys work on-site in hospitals and health centers with physicians, nurses, social workers, residents and others to identify and resolve legal barriers that negatively affect people’s health, independence and quality of life. This on-site approach gives clients and healthcare workers an easier point of contact with legal services, allowing prompt advocacy to address legal issues before they become a crisis.
The clients we serve experience physical limitations; many have suffered catastrophic injuries and illnesses such as stroke, brain injury, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy among others. Our work goes beyond the office and courtroom. We act as trusted advisers, listening ears, and advocates.
In celebration of our 30 years, we will be looking back at LCD’s history through interviews, milestones and more, all culminating with our 30th Anniversary Fall Celebration on October 19, 2017 at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.
To see one of the first articles written about LCD, please click here.