College Of Medicine Students Open Free Clinic In Tyrone
Instead of the usual clinical rotations and hours of studying, third-year Penn State College of Medicine students at the University Park Regional Campus took on another challenge to put their knowledge to practical use. After preparing for several months, they opened a student-run (free) clinic called LionCare in Tyrone on Saturday, March 5.
The clinic is a partnership between the College of Medicine (University Park Regional Campus), the Penn State College of Nursing, and the Tyrone Regional Health Network. Located at the Tyrone Hospital Rural Health Clinic in Blair County, the student-run clinic will offer free medical services with no insurance required.
“This is reminding me why I went to medical school in the first place – to help people who really need medical care,” said co-director of the clinic Clay Cooper to Penn State News. “There’s definitely a need for this type of service in Tyrone, and it’s an exciting opportunity to help start this from the ground up.”
For now, the clinic will be open on the first Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and will provide a variety of services such as treatment of acute care needs, general health and mental health needs, work and driver’s physicals, blood pressure checks to adults over the age of 18, and childcare during appointments.
Not only are the students helping out a community with the free clinic, they are also gaining valuable experiences. According to Penn State Medicine, “Students from the College of Medicine and College of Nursing will serve in all roles at the clinic, from checking in and putting patients into exam rooms to taking a personal history and doing patient exams. Students will present the information to the volunteer College of Medicine physicians and nurse practitioners staffing the clinic, who will subsequently see the patient with the students. Together, they will reach a conclusion on the care needed.”
Before deciding on Tyrone, the students canvassed the community and took note of their needs. After much evaluation, they decided that Tyrone (which is located 30 minutes outside of State College) had the perfect demographics as well as a large patient population in need of care.
For Penn State Medicine students, it’s perfect symbiosis — a community in need and young hands eager to help.