Auburn University Pharmacy Students and University of South Alabama Health Students Join the Student Run Free Clinic

MOBILE, Ala., September 6, 2022 / PRNewswire / – Teamwork and Taking Care of Others. With these thoughts in mind, the pharmacy students of the Auburn University Harrison College of the Pharmacy campus a Mobile and students of the health professions of the University of Southern Alabama they came together in 2014, founding what became the United States of America Students run a free clinic.

Operated by the Salvation Army on Dauphin Street in the center Mobilestudents from multiple disciplines of health and social sciences collaborate to empower patients through health education, promoting health literacy, and improving access to community health resources.

Much healthcare today is done in a team environment with pharmacists, doctors, nurses and many others working together to provide the best possible care for their patients. The interprofessional nature of the clinic allows for this Harrison College of Pharmacy, or HCOP, students to get a preview of what awaits us in a professional environment.

“Interprofessional experience was an important part of the HCOP curriculum and being able to actually use these skills before entering my fourth year was important to me,” he said. Angelica Holmesa member of the Class of 2024. “This experience allowed me to see the roles of other disciplines in a health care team and where my place was as a pharmacy student.”

Holmes, a native of Otsego, Michiganand a graduate of University of Western Michigan, is currently president of the clinic’s student council. By maintaining a leadership position within the clinic, he understands the value of experiential learning as he prepares for his career.

“This experience is vital to my learning because I was able to work with real patients in my first year of pharmacy school,” said Holmes. “This opportunity taught me how to think critically about a patient’s case and learn in a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, where it’s okay to go wrong.”

Under the supervision of a faculty advisor and various tutors, students working at the clinic see a variety of patients, many of whom are living homeless. In addition to providing an experiential learning opportunity for students to practice clinical and communication skills, the clinic also improves sensitivity to vulnerable populations and promotes a lifelong commitment to service.

“As healthcare professionals, it is our responsibility to serve humanity, which includes people from all walks of life, backgrounds and socioeconomic status,” he said. Sarah Grace Barnes, also a member of the Class 2024 and pharmacy contact person in the student college. “Everyone deserves access to care and the patients we serve at the Student Run Free Clinic are extremely grateful that we show up for them and provide care every week.”

Barnes, a Good hope native, she was first exposed to the clinic while working on her biology degree at the University of Southern Alabama. Seeing firsthand the valuable experience and impact on patients, he knew it was something he wanted to be a part of as soon as he entered pharmacy school.

“Experiential learning is an absolute necessity to become a pharmacist. The skills we learn in the lab and in the classroom must be exercised to ensure we are practically ready pharmacists when entering the workforce after graduation,” said Barnes . “The Student Run Free Clinic is the perfect place to practice blood pressure and glucose screening, patient counseling and assessment of the adequacy of treatment regimens.”

From improving health outcomes to building relationships, Auburn e South Alabama students are working together to make a difference in their community.

“Our patients come back to the clinic weekly to check their blood pressure or glucose, or just to sit down and talk to the volunteers,” said Holmes. “You never know how you will be able to help someone, either by providing services or by listening.

“Since I started volunteering, this has been the most amazing thing: I wasn’t just there to practice my skills in the classroom, I was there to build a relationship with patients.”

SOURCE Auburn University

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