A brand new mobile clinic operated by the University of Texas Health Science Center will hit the road for the first time this week. As Houston Public Radio’s Jack Williams reports, it’s the maiden voyage of the latest traveling health clinic headed to the Rio Grande Valley.
Elma Requenez is the nursing care coordinator aboard the new 30-foot, $240,000 motor home that’s outfitted with three examination rooms, a laboratory and telemedicine capabilities.
“It’s just like a child at Christmas time, how they get all thrilled and emotional when they open up those toys. Well, this is going to be my big toy.”
This is the third mobile clinic operated by the UT Health Science Center. The last one served 30,000 patients over 11 years before it wore out. Dr. Kathleen Becan-McBride runs the university’s Texas-Mexico Border Health Projects.
“It’s important for our university and our Health Science Center because we’re trying to help with the medically underserved and let the people know that we’re out there and hopefully we can resolve some issues before they become major ones where they end up in the emergency room.”
Dr. Max Buja is the executive vice president of academic affairs at the UT Health Science Center and says the mobile clinic serves about 3,000 people a year, providing a variety of free health care.
“The van goes around to different communities in the Lower Rio Grande Valley and we make announcements in the community. People come and this is a very important service for providing primary health care services for these people.”
You can see pictures of the mobile clinic on our website, KUHF.org.