Samuel Merritt PA Students Makes a Change

Be the CHANGE grant recipient and PA student Jessica Warner and her first-year PA classmates from Samuel Merritt University made a change to improve health by running a medical clinic in the rural, mountainous community of Batata, Panama.

They were joined in this interdisciplinary trip by nursing and physical therapy providers and students.

During the three-day clinic, 486 patients were seen; and most patients were treated for musculoskeletal and respiratory complaints. Additional community members will be reached through the patient education materials left at the school where the clinic was held.

The nearest permanent medical clinic is eight hours away on foot, and most residents do not have access to the necessary transportation. As a result, the SMU medical clinic, now in its fourth year, provides the primary source of health care for the community.

“The trip made me feel more confident as a budding medical provider, and it was so incredible to help people in such a remote area,” said Warner. “I look forward to continuing to be the change for health in my PA studies and in my future practice.”

This project was supported by the nccPA Health Foundation’s Be the CHANGE Grant.

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