About 20 School of Health Professions students performed health screenings and provided information during a health fair at Bob Ross Senior Center on Nov. 3.
The range of information and screenings was wide, said Dr. Greg Ernst, associate professor and interim chair of the Department of Physical Therapy. Physical therapy students performed fall risk screening and offered advice on balance, posture and exercise. Physician Assistant Studies students gave blood pressure and cholesterol screenings, while Respiratory Care students performed lung function tests and pulse oximetry, and Clinical Laboratory Sciences students passed out information on common lab tests.
“We thought this would be a good place that we could provide some services to benefit them as well as provide some experience for our students learning their skills in terms of communicating with clients or patients and providing information,” said Ernst, who estimated as many as 100 people attended the three-hour event.
Clinical Laboratory Sciences senior Devaki Allen worked at a table with several other classmates and offered information about common blood tests ordered by doctors.
“Whatever they were interested in, we discussed,” said Allen, who also shared information about complete blood count and the importance of fasting before glucose tests. “We had one person who wanted to learn a lot—clogged arteries in particular.”
The event also offered students a chance to learn about the other fields in the School—an opportunity Allen appreciated.
“Knowing what other departments have to offer is crucial in order to provide better patient health,” she said.
That valuable experience is one reason the health fair could become a recurring event, Ernst said.
“We work together as professionals all the time in managing patients using a team approach,” he said. “So it’s important that as students they get to work together, as well as learn what the other professions do.”