Palm Beach Atlantic pharmacy students are getting a head start. After learning clinical work in their classrooms, they’re using that knowledge and putting it into practice at Gregory School of Pharmacy’s Health Fair on October 6, held for the first time at the Rinker Athletic Campus, located at 3401 Parker Avenue in West Palm Beach.
“Our mission is to develop servant-leaders who are patient care advocates,” said Dr. Jay Jackson, assistant dean for students and assistant professor of pharmacy practice for Lloyd L. Gregory School of Pharmacy. “We want our students to follow Christ’s example of serving, teaching and healing those in need.”
The health fair started 11 years ago as a student-led initiative and remains that way to this day. With the support of Gregory School of Pharmacy’s faculty who serve as advisors, it provides nearby neighborhoods education on a variety of health-related topics and disease prevention strategies. Some of the offerings will include free selected health screening services—from blood pressure measurement, blood sugar measurement to diabetes and depression screenings, plus games for kids, face painting, bounce houses, giveaways, free food and flu shots from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The new location keeps on a partnership that PBA has developed with the nearby Parker Avenue community through a collaborative effort known as the Parker Avenue Consortium. This group consists of several partners and stakeholders in the community that are united together for the common goal of serving the community near the Rinker Atlantic Campus.
The health fair consists of 20 to 30 booths that focus on various health topics: diabetes, asthma, smoking cessation, children’s health, skin care, nutrition, mental health, spiritual heath, complex medication regimens, men’s and women’s health, gastrointestinal care, alcohol abuse, operation heart, generation Rx, operation immunization, alternative medicine and more.
The booths are student-led but the activity is overseen by a faculty advisor who provides training beforehand and approves all educational materials. The booths also provide resources for visitors that promote local free health clinics and social services.
The health fair is expecting approximately 200 community visitors this year. Sixty PBA pharmacy students and 15 nursing students, along with students from Florida Atlantic University’s College of Medicine and social work students will be participating. Other community partners that may also take part in this event include: Walgreens [offering free flu shots], Community Health Center, Palm Beach County Fire Department, Palm Beach County Substance Awareness Coalition and the City of WPB Fire Department.