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Chicago Doctor Makes House Calls In Dangerous Area He Grew Up In So Residents Can Receive Proper Care

02/10/2015 02:36 pm ET | Updated Feb 10, 2015

A Chicago doctor returned to the neighborhood where he grew up to provide care to those who need it most.

Fred Richardson was raised in Englewood, a low-income area on Chicago's South Side with high unemployment and crime rates, the Chicago Tribune reported. Richardson went on to become a doctor, and for the past 25 years, he's given back by making house calls in some of the city's most dangerous neighborhoods so residents can get proper medical support.

Though house calls may sound like an old-fashioned idea, Richardson says that sometimes it's the only way his patients can receive support.

"These old guys can't get out," he told the "Today" show, explaining that some of his patients are unable to leave their homes for care. "Medicare will pay for a home visit -- actually will reimburse better than [for] an office visit."

The house calls also allow him to communicate with patients in a way that he isn't able to do in a clinical setting -- something his patients recognize.

"One of the things I enjoy the most about having a doctor like Dr. Fred is that he's a good listener," Alberta Bowles, one of his house call patients told the Chicago Tribune. "You can talk to him. He does not rush you to do anything and he never dismisses anything you say."

Richardson, who's had his own practice since 1990, works six days a week, and is on call 24 hours a day, but he also finds time to empower future generations. According to the Tribune, he tutors minority medical students for free three nights a week.

"I was told many times, 'Your grades aren’t high enough to do this,'" Richardson told one class, according to the "Today" show. "But I did it."

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