Essexville’s Helen M. Nickless Volunteer Clinic Receives Prestigious 2022 MHA Ludwig Community Benefit Award

The Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA) has named the Helen M. Nickless Volunteer Clinic as a recipient of the 2022 MHA Ludwig Community Benefit Award during its Annual Membership Meeting on Mackinac Island.

The award is named in memory of Patric E. Ludwig, a former MHA president who championed investing in the community’s overall health and is presented to member organizations integrally involved in collaborative programs to improve the health and well-being of area residents.

The Helen M. Nickless Volunteer Clinic was opened by McLaren Bay Region and the McLaren Bay Medical Foundation in March 2004. Located at 1460 W. Center Rd., Suite 1, in Essexville, the clinic serves the primary healthcare needs of disadvantaged residents in Bay and surrounding counties, connecting them with basic health resources through education, prevention, and treatment.

Clinic hours are on Wednesdays from 4 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. or until the last patient is seen. Three part-time employees oversee clinic operations and patient needs, arranging referrals, prescription assistance, volunteer scheduling and more. More than 175 volunteers, including licensed professionals and lay volunteers, provide more than 2,000 hours of service each year.

“We are honored to receive this prestigious award,” said Lynn Weaver, vice president of philanthropy at the McLaren Bay Region. “We plan to use these much-needed funds from the Ludwig Award to assist with our patients’ prescription medication costs.”

The clinic plays an invaluable role in protecting the health of our most economically vulnerable residents. From March 2004 through September 2021, the clinic provided care to 9,275 individuals during 31,568 visits. When asked where they would have sought care without the clinic, 65% of new patients said they would have forgone care and 20% indicated the emergency room.

For more information on the Helen M. Nickless Volunteer Clinic, or to make a donation, please contact Lynn Weaver at (989) 895-4728 or by visiting the Helen M Nickless Volunteer Clinic page on our website.

About McLaren Bay Region

McLaren Bay Region is a 415-bed acute tertiary care hospital in Bay City, Michigan, providing specialty care, primary care, and preventive care. Services include cardiovascular, neuroscience, orthopedics, oncology, women’s health, and rehabilitation. McLaren Bay Region’s emergency department treats more than 45,000 patients each year and is certified by the Joint Commission as a Primary Stroke Center. McLaren Bay Region is an integral part of the 15-hospital McLaren Health Care system based in Grand Blanc, Michigan. Learn more at

The Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA) is based in greater Lansing and advocates in Michigan and Washington, DC on behalf of healthcare providers and the communities and patients they serve. The MHA is a nationally recognized leader on initiatives that protect and promote quality, cost-effective and accessible healthcare. To learn more, visit or follow the MHA on Facebook and Twitter.