Public School Employees Benefit from College of Pharmacy Health Screenings
FEB. 16, 2006 | Students from the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) College of Pharmacy recently took their education on the road.
Thanks to a $5,000 pilot grant from the American Heart Association, 25 pharmacy students conducted health screenings for 115 employees of the Sheridan public school district. The employees were screened for five risk factors of metabolic syndrome: blood pressure, high density lipoproteint (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides, blood glucose and waist circumference. Metabolic syndrome refers to a group of health risks related to heart disease. Participants also were counseled about the importance of healthy behaviors in regard to heart health.
The pharmacy students will return to Sheridan in May to conduct the screening a second time with the same participants. “When we return, we will check to see how many people had a change in their risk factors and how many altered their behavior due to what they learned at the first screening,” said Amy Franks, Pharm.D., assistant professor in the College of Pharmacy.
Franks is co-investigator for the project along with Scott Warmack, Pharm.D., and Donna West, Ph.D. Both Warmack and West are assistant professors in the College of Pharmacy.
Assisting with the screenings were students in Sheridan High School’s anatomy and advanced placement science classes. The high school students helped prior to the screening day with publicity and recruiting efforts and during the event by monitoring the flow of participants. A cross-section of school district employees took part in the screening, including teachers, administrators, cafeteria personnel, bus drivers and others.
Franks said that she hopes the project will result in additional funding to conduct screenings at other locations. “Our plan is to see what worked best this time and use that knowledge to expand our program and educate more people in the state about their risk for heart disease,” she said.
Links on this page
College of Pharmacy: www.uams.edu/cop