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Healthwise mobile health clinic at Bluffton Public Library

UPDATE: The mobile health clinic will be at Bluffton Public Library on Friday, April 29.

Have you ever driven past the Bluffton Public Library, 145 S. Main, and wondered why there is occasionally a big ONU bus parked outside? From 9:00-11:00 a.m. on the last Friday of the month, the Ohio Northern University Healthwise program provides a mobile health clinic with free health screenings.

The Icon stopped by to chat with the providers and to take a look inside the vehicle. We began with a cheeky question:

Does a pharmacist also drive the bus? No, a duly trained bus driver brings the staff to Bluffton. He was having breakfast at Lulu’s when we came by.

What is the most popular service? Cholesterol testing is one of the most sought after services because it is often difficult to access outside of a doctor’s office or hospital.

The providers, pharmacists and ONU pharmacy students, can serve two patients at a time. Winter weather sometimes impacts the number of patients seen, but even in January the mobile clinic saw nine patients in a two-hour period. The bus definitely looks bigger on the inside.

Screenings include blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and bone-mineral density. Note that cholesterol and blood sugar screenings require a 12-hour fast. Physical assessments, immunizations, medication delivery and a free vitamin program for those 12 and younger and 50 or older are available. Patients may also speak with ONU Healthwise staff about their results or concerns, and even receive referrals to area doctors.

Another note: the clinic opens before the library and provides assistance on a first-come, first-served basis.

The mobile clinic is also scheduled at Alger Food Pantry (Wednesday after the third Tuesday), Dunkirk (second Friday of the month), Kenton Hardincrest (first Monday), Kenton YMCA (first Thursday), Kenton Seton Hall (second Monday), and Lima Public Library (first Friday).

PHOTO, L-R Chase Kiriazis, PharmD; Luke Klinehoffer, PharmD; Olivia Welch, PharmD