The Student National Medical Association (SNMA) chapter from the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center (TTUHSC) is hosting the annual SNMA Health Fair from 2-5 p.m. Feb. 22 at the Maggie Trejo Supercenter located at 3200 Amherst St. in Rodgers Park. The event is free and open to the public.
SNMA members will conduct diabetes screenings. Other confirmed screenings and activities available include a demonstration conducted by the Fitness and Nutrition Club showing the sugar and salt content of processed foods; demonstrations of basic eyes, ears, nose and throat exams by the ENT Club; and cancer prevention education delivered by the Dermatology Club, who also will hand out sunscreen.
Blood pressure readings, concussion education activities for children and many other screenings and activities also will be provided by other student organizations.
TTUHSC’s SNMA chapter currently has 50 members. The group’s mission includes addressing the needs of underserved communities by increasing the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent and socially conscious physicians. TTUHSC medical student Brendalyn Iweh said the health fair is one of the events the TTUHSC student chapter organizes annually to fulfill that mission.
“The TTUHSC SNMA health fair is important because it helps address the need for services that target prevention and education among underserved communities,” Iweh said. “By providing free screenings and health information, the health fair engages the public in a conversation about common health issues and concerns, as well as provides opportunities for community members to learn how to help their families stay healthy and safe.”
Iweh and fellow medical student Noriko Merida-Morales serve as SNMA Community Service co-chairs. Merida-Morales said the health fair helps medical students promote the important role primary care play in a person’s overall health and wellness by creating community engagement opportunities.
“SNMA is one of the nation’s oldest and most impactful student-run medical organizations and is committed to supporting current and future underrepresented minority medical students,” Merida-Morales said. “They do this by addressing the needs of underserved communities and helping to increase the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent and socially conscious physicians.”
Other events that help advance SNMA’s goals at TTUHSC include the SNMA Annual Scholarship Banquet for medical students, a mentorship program with Texas Tech University’s Multicultural Association of Premedical Students (MAPS) and the Doctors for a Day Minicamp for local 5th graders.
“We aim to encourage students of any age to pursue a career in medicine, so we try to provide opportunities for mentorship and support along the way,” Merida-Morales said.