Program Established: 1996.
Program Period: June 6 to July 22, 2011.
Students/Projects/Sites: 28 students worked on 18 projects at 18 community sites in Erie, Pennsylvania.
Professional Discipline: Medicine.
Service Days: Students provided 754 days of health-related service.
Types of Sites Served: Community organization offices, in the field/community, geriatric facilities, community health centers/clinics, a school, client homes, a recreation center, and other sites.
Student Activities:* Oral health activities, health-related client education, health activities planning, health issues research, community social activities, client interviews, evaluation of existing programs, development or administration of surveys, advocacy activities, assessing community resources.
Population Demographics: Mixture of females and males; all ages (project dependent); mixture of races/ethnicities; English-speaking.
Community Health Issues:* Exercise, oral health, access to health care, diet and nutrition, obesity, cardiovascular health, diabetes, mental health, personal hygiene and physical disability. Significant proportions of students encountered the issues of communication (language/literacy), sexual questions/issues, cancer, child care, insurance/social services, STDs, substance abuse, and women's health.
Didactic Sessions: BTG students in Erie attended didactic sessions on Wednesday mornings. Faculty included personnel from LECOM, along with individuals from health and social service agencies with specific expertise in health-related issues. The sessions included the following: Community Health Care; Dental Health; Serving the Elderly; Serving Women at Risk; Serving the Mentally Challenged; Discussion Miracle of St. Anthony.
Community Event: LECOM hosted its annual Meet and Greet on April 6, 2011. This event enabled the students selected for the 2011 Bridging the Gaps Program to meet all the community sites seeking an intern for their facility. During the Meet and Greet, the community preceptors set up small displays about their agency and the students visited each to hear about project opportunities and learn about the sites.
Oral Health Activities: A local dentist and a dental assistant gave a presentation on the relationship of oral health to overall health and offered suggestions on how to incorporate oral health activities into the students' projects, with particular emphasis on cultural issues and oral health needs within the populations at the various sites. Selected literature, dental materials, and resource information were distributed. All of the LECOM projects incorporated oral health activities, and the dental team supported students' oral health activities throughout the summer program. According to student estimates, 136 children (aged 13 and under), 95 youth/young adults (aged 14 to 20) and 631 adults received oral health education.
Poster Presentation: The LECOM Annual Poster Presentation was held on August 24, 2011, at the College. The event was attended by representatives of the BTG community partners, invited guests, and faculty and students of LECOM. Raeann Carrier, Program Director, and Thomas Doran, Student Coordinator, presented.
*The information provided here reflects only those categories reported by 40% or more of students participating at this BTG program location.
For a complete alphabetical list of all 2011 BTG CHIP community partners and to view community project summaries by site, click here.
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