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Fernando Vazquez '18 writes about the Urban Health Scholars' visit to Teche Action, a federally qualified health center (FQHC), founded in 1974 to provide primary care to the underserved, rural regions surrounding New Orleans.

In March 2015, six medical students in Geisel's Urban Health Scholars program went to New Orleans for spring break to experience and learn about the city's challenging and distinct health care delivery system. They are sharing their experiences in several posts here on the Geisel Med Blog. You can find all their posts here.

Teche Clinic

By: Fernando Vazquez '18

Teche Action, a federally qualified health center (FQHC), was founded in 1974 to provide primary care to the underserved, rural regions surrounding New Orleans. Since its inception, it has grown to ten locations, including one school based site. It has also expanded to provide mental health services to its patients. FQHCs receive funding from the federal government, and so are required to provide care to anyone who walks through their door, regardless of insurance coverage, income, race, or gender. If the patient requires services that Teche cannot provide, they are referred to another clinic or hospital and are covered financially by Teche.

UHS-Nola-9

The Urban Health Scholars spent the day learning about Teche from one of its directors, Mrs. Diane Freeman. Mrs. Freeman introduced us to the medical staff, with whom we discussed Teche and FQHCs from the physician’s perspective. Brendin and I were then lucky enough to witness a young woman see the first ultrasound images of her unborn child. It was a remarkable experience. In the past, UHS has spent entire days at Teche learning the inner workings and challenges of such clinics. Although we were only able to spend one day there this year, the relationship between Teche and Geisel continues to grow, and we look forward to sending more of our peers to learn about their work in the years to come.

 

The Urban Health Scholars visited Project Fleur de Lis, a non-profit organization that brings mental health services to schools.

In March 2015, six medical students in Geisel's Urban Health Scholars program went to New Orleans for spring break to experience and learn about the city's challenging and distinct health care delivery system. They are sharing their experiences in several posts here on the Geisel Med Blog. You can find all their posts here.

Project Fleur de Lis

By: Fernando Vazquez '18

The Urban Health Scholars visited Project Fleur de Lis, a non-profit organization that brings mental health services to schools. The small team of five social workers manages to accomplish impressive feats by using a screener developed at UCLA. The screener is designed to identify relative risk of developing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. If a child scores within a particular range, a note is sent home to notify parents of the free services available to their child. One-on-one sessions with a social worker from Project Fleur de Lis are reserved for children with more significant needs, while group sessions are used to work out issues between peers as well as to provide a safe space to socialize with individuals going through similar situations.

UHS-Nola-7Due to the organization's small size, Project Fleur de Lis can only work with eight schools at a time. Despite this limitation, the team of social workers is quite impactful. If a child needs more profound, long-term care, they are referred to a psychiatrist to be seen free of charge. Any necessary prescriptions are also paid for in full. Project Fleur de Lis has been so successful in diminishing the taboo the dominates mental health elsewhere, that they are expanding their efforts to include training teachers and health care professionals to screen their students and patients for traumatic events in place of attributing misbehavior to faults in character.

It was quite inspiring to see such a small group take on this tremendous task so effectively and competently.