Community Health Fair at Lutheran Senior Residence at Pennsauken
Enjoying the “block party” atmosphere of the Community Health Fair at the Lutheran Senior Residence at Pennsauken were Dr. Mario Maffei and Dr. Bhavika Patel of the Virtua Health System and Alex Elefante, LSMNJ disaster recovery coordinator.
The ongoing buzz of conversation and animated faces of seniors and medical personnel confirmed the success of the Community Health Fair held Wednesday October 12 at the Lutheran Senior Residence at Pennsauken. Held from 8 a.m. to noon, the fair was targeted to the local senior population. Provided free-of-charge were information, resources, and screenings related to blood pressure, foot care, diabetes, cancer, dental health, nutrition for wellness, managing medications, and other topics to help stay healthy in the aging process.
The fair was inspired by Dr. Bhavika Patel, a third year resident and residency outreach coordinator in the Virtua Health System. Her training experiences out in the community helped Dr. Patel realize that, in underserved communities, information about health living and preventative care are often not accessible, especially to seniors, in their own neighborhoods. Dr. Patel proposed the concept of the community health fair which led to a partnership between Virtua Graduate Medical Education and Lutheran Social Ministries of New Jersey (LSMNJ) as the fair sponsors. LSMNJ provided the place and many of the senior fair attendees and Virtua provided the medical talent and displays. Virtua medical staff in specialties such as family health, podiatry, dentistry, and pharmacy along with 38 nursing students from Rowan University volunteered to work the fair, donating some of their limited time-off to reach seniors who might not otherwise have access to their skill and knowledge.