FARMINGTON — This wasn’t the first time Richard Dzvileski of Freeman has had his blood pressure checked for free in the Healthy Community Coalition’s Mobile Health Van.

He waited patiently for the numbers to be logged while other people started to find their way into the van parked outside Walmart on Tuesday afternoon.

The van and staff have resumed providing outreach services at the Farmington store site from noon to 4 p.m. every Tuesday from now until Oct. 26, Nate Morse, program coordinator, said.

They’ve used the site for the past eight years, although budget reductions have meant splitting up the season. Now they offer the outreach services from April to June and September through October.

It’s been a great location, he said. The afternoon time frame also provides an increase in visitors. The three-year-old van provides a larger waiting area and a private room for health assessments.

“Combining all the outreach locations used by the Mobile Health Van, more than 3,000 visitors are seen each year,” he said.

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The average age of those visitors is 44 to 48, while the average age of those at the Walmart site is 56. Many people in their 40s have no insurance, he said.

The staff can provide visitors older than 18 with a free ScoreHealth screening, a health risk assessment tool that includes a cholesterol and blood pressure check, he said. It’s a nonfasting cholesterol check that gives a review of one’s total cholesterol.

Along with the health assessment, the staff provides counseling on diet, exercise, health risk factors, stress management and strategies for dealing with busy lifestyles, he said. They also provide tobacco dependency counseling.

“We try to give them steps to make changes, if they choose to do so, to reach a goal of improving blood pressure, including diet and being more active,” Morse said.

Visitors not interested in the health assessment can stop by the van for just a blood pressure check or other health information.

The van is also used for other health events, including November flu shots and a couple of events planned with the hospital.

The health van will be parked at the fairgrounds during Farmington Fair, Sept. 19-25, and will not be at Walmart on Sept. 21, Morse said. During the fair, staff will offer all services, except the cholesterol checks.

Any other cancellations of the Tuesday health outreach at Walmart will be announced on WKTJ radio. For more information, contact the Healthy Community Coalition at 779-2931.

[email protected]


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