Poverty and life on the streets lead to a unique set of medical concerns.

At St. Francis House, our Marie L. Arky Medical Clinic is operated on-site by Boston Health Care for the Homeless. Their physicians, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses have the experience and expertise to treat these concerns. We are also fortunate to partner with local colleges, universities, and nursing schools, whose students matriculate through our program for their community-health clinical experience.

The clinic here at St. Francis House provides approximately 10,000 appointments per year, making it one of the busiest health care sites in the city for homeless adults.

To schedule an appointment or follow-up on your medical care, please call the clinic at 857-654-1500.

To schedule an appointment or follow-up on your medical care, please call the clinic at 857-654-1500.


We offer primary care, episodic care, preventive health services, and foot care, which is a chronic yet often-overlooked need. We assess and treat common foot problems on-site and provide podiatry referrals when necessary.

HIV testing and counseling are available once a week, and we make vision and dental care referrals.

The clinic also also provide psychiatric care, thanks to two local psychiatrists who partner with us. They, along with interns and residents from several local hospitals, help us meet this critical need.


The medical team also participates in the Whole Health Care Clinic, which is unique to St. Francis House.

The Whole Health Care Clinic is a holistic, integrated system of care for patients dually diagnosed with substance abuse and mental illness.

Staff from the clinic meet once a week with staff from various St. Francis House programs and a psychiatrist to assess the needs of guests who may be dealing with mental illness, substance disorders, medical conditions, and vocational and social skill challenges. This comprehensive approach ensures that guests receive the best possible care.

A life spent caring for others

Born and raised in Salem, Massachusetts, Marie Louise (Mahoney) Arky launched her nursing career after graduating from the Salem Hospital Nursing School.  During the Korean War, she served in the U.S. Air Force Nursing Corp stateside in Alaska and Kansas before a career as head nurse for the Veterans Administration Hospitals in Manhattan, NY and West Roxbury, MA.

Marie’s life was driven by a passion and deep concern for homeless populations, the under-served, and individuals burdened by chronic physical and mental illness.  Her favorite organizations were St. Francis House, the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem and the American Diabetes Association.  She was a lover of history, an expert at embroidery, an avid reader and collector of antiques.  In supporting her husband’s roles in the medical field, Marie was a beloved maternal figure for generations of house officers at the Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge and medical students of Harvard Medical School’s F. W. Peabody Society.  She also was a tireless volunteer for the American Diabetes Association, which recognized her with its Outstanding Service Award in 1997.

A gift of love and legacy

Marie met her husband, Dr. Ronald Arky, MD, at the Manhattan Veterans Administration Hospital.  The couple married and moved to Wellesley, MA where they enjoyed 49 years of marriage.  Marie kept detailed diaries of the couple’s many adventures traveling the world together while Dr. Arky served as the President of the American Diabetes Association, including Asia, India and the Middle East.  When Marie passed away in 2009 from ovarian cancer, Dr. Arky made a generous donation to dedicate the St. Francis House medical clinic in her name and memory, in keeping with Marie’s nursing background and commitment to direct care of underserved populations.

Operated on-site by Boston Health Care for the Homeless, physicians, nurse practitioners, and registered nurses at the Marie L. Arky Medical clinic now provide more than 10,000 free appointments per year, making it one of the busiest health care sites in the city for adults experiencing poverty and homelessness.  Marie would be so proud and happy to see the powerful impact of our clinic today.