Healthy Living on Budget

PA students at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) are taking healthcare where it’s needed the most in Galveston, Texas, and have served nearly 180 individuals. “Healthy Living on a Budget” is a product of UTMB’s PA Studies Community Outreach Committee.

For the project, PA students teamed up with students from UTMB’s Clinical Laboratory Science(CLS) program to provide health screenings and education to community members served by the Galveston County Food Bank and at local health fairs.

Under the guidance of UTMB PA and CLS faculty, students screen community members for hypertension and high cholesterol every second Saturday of the month. Screened individuals are counseled and given information on diet, physical activity, and healthy lifestyle choices. Those needing further evaluation and care are referred to a local health clinic where free or reduced cost health services are available.

“Our motive for beginning Healthy Living on a Budget stemmed from a desire to practice newly learned physical exam and health counseling skills outside of the classroom while, at the same time, giving back to the Galveston community,” said Kate Corbin, UTMB PA Student.

To sustain “Healthy Living on a Budget” and ensure continuity in how services are delivered, the PA students with the assistance of a UTMB videographer created a video for current and future student volunteers. (Watch here.) The video not only instructs students on how to use medical equipment; but it also gives instructions on how to conduct patient counseling and document patient outcomes.

The PA Studies Community Outreach Committee will continue to work with UTMB’s CLS program and plan to expand its interprofessional collaboration to include UTMB’s Nutrition and Metabolism Department.

This project was supported with funding from the nccPA Health Foundation’s Be the CHANGE grant program.

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