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Nursing class to conduct health fair Saturday

Mario Gonzalez/ The Rider Graphic

The “Health Is Wealth” fair, an event offering free health screenings, vaccines and about 33 wellness teachings, will take place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Southwest High School.

“We are doing this health fair to equip and inform the community with enrichment and knowledge to prevent, promote and enhance health and wellness,” said Marisol Hernandez, publicity and agency group leader for the Bachelor of Science and Nursing Community Health Class at UTRGV. “We will do this through teaching topics, and these topics include health promotion, women wellness, men wellness, heart conditions, mental health, gun safety … family violence and emergency preparedness.”

The students will teach the 33 different topics to those in attendance.

Health professionals from the community will also attend the fair to reinforce the teachings.

The class, which consists of about 130 students, assessed families in the community surrounding PSJA Southwest, located at 300 E El Rancho Blanco Rd. in Pharr.

“According to the assessment that we did in our community, which was PSJA Southwest, we did find out that almost 50 percent of the residents had elevated blood pressure and also blood sugar,” Hernandez said. “We also found out that 50 percent of them were uninsured, so most of them didn’t have access to health care, and we also found out half of them were not immunized.”

Students in the Community Health class were each assigned a family, whom they would visit and assess every two weeks.

“We’ve been able to communicate with these families and really know where their needs are, what their needs are, so that we can tailor our health fair to the community,” said Adelina Silva, class president. “So, we’ll be doing wellness teachings, a fun-filled educated environment for families to embrace the knowledge we will be providing as nursing students.”

Free screenings offered at the event will include cholesterol, diabetes and Acanthosis nigricans.

Acanthosis nigricans is a skin condition characterized by areas of dark, velvety discoloration in body folds and creases. These typically occur in people who are obese or have diabetes, according to Mayoclinic.org. Children who develop the condition are at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Drawings will be held in each booth, with the main prize being a laptop computer.

For more information, contact Silva at (832) 302-2286 or email her at adelina.silva01@utrgv.edu.

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