Medical Students Volunteer With Migrant Farmworker ClinicJuly 8, 2021
PCOM South Georgia students spent days of their summer break providing administrative and logistical
support at several field clinics organized by the Ellenton Farm Worker Family Health
Winston Price, MD, served as the faculty lead for PCOM South Georgia and worked closely with the student
volunteers. He said FWFHP is necessary to ensure that migrant workers and their families
receive access to health care. He noted that the medical student volunteers learned
valuable lessons by observing first-hand the disparities that are present in medical
care for vulnerable populations.
“The migrant workers often don’t get the care and medical assistance that they need
or can afford without health insurance,” he said. “This program provides preventive
and episodic care at no cost, which is extremely necessary for the families who work
outdoors in harsh conditions for long periods of time. Extreme climate-related exposure
further exacerbates chronic medical conditions that they disproportionately suffer
According to the 2019 U.S. Census Bureau, Hispanic and Latino citizens make up 19%
of Colquitt County's population. During the two-week volunteer effort, Iris Rivera
(DO ‘25) served as an interpreter between patients and providers. She said that providing
medical care to migrants has been a driving force for her medical education.
“A big influence on choosing medicine as a career path was my first shadowing experience
at a migrant clinic during my undergraduate education,” she said. “I knew from the
first day that I walked out of that clinic that I wanted to provide medical care to
migrants just as the physicians there were doing.”
Volunteering with programs like this clinic was one of the primary reasons Rivera
said she chose to attend medical school at PCOM South Georgia.
She said, “The Ellenton Farmworker Clinic provides an opportunity to work with a population
that too often goes unnoticed when it comes to healthcare access. While The Farm Worker
Family Health Program is only a two-week long health camp for seasonal workers, local
clinics such as the Ellenton Farmworker Health Clinic provides a medical home base
for the families to continue medical care when needed.”
Mohammad Malik (DO ‘24), who was deeply involved in the Area Health Education Center
in his home state of North Carolina, also worked alongside the families and healthcare
professionals. He said, “I wanted to further immerse myself in the South Georgia community
and the Ellenton Farm Clinic was a perfect way to do so. This clinic allowed me to
work alongside other Georgia AHEC members to provide health care to the underserved
and underprivileged community.”
In addition to encouraging student participation, PCOM South Georgia, through the
President’s Community Wellness Initiative, donated bottled water, cooling towels, wide brimmed hats with neck coverings, hand
sanitizer and sunscreen to the migrant workers and students who attended the clinic.
With a strong commitment to student volunteer efforts and community wellness, PCOM President and CEO Jay S. Feldstein, DO ‘81, formed the CWI to support existing projects and foster cross-campus collaboration
to provide programming and resources for the communities that PCOM serves.
About the President’s Community Wellness Initiative
With a strong commitment to student volunteer efforts and community wellness, PCOM
President and CEO Jay S. Feldstein, DO ‘81, established the President’s Community Wellness Initiative (CWI) to enhance the culture of holistic health and well-being on PCOM’s campuses and in
the communities they serve. The CWI aims to promote cross-campus collaboration in
educational and health services programming and resources to support the physical,
mental, nutritional and environmental wellness of the College’s communities in Philadelphia
and in Suwanee and Moultrie, Georgia. Focus areas include direct patient care, health
and wellness education, and clinical and community-based research.
Faculty Focus: Rasheed Agboola, MDMedical Students Receive White CoatsWomen in Medicine: Savita Arya, MD
About PCOM South Georgia
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) extended its commitment to the
Southeast by establishing PCOM South Georgia, an additional teaching location in Moultrie, Georgia. PCOM South Georgia offers both
a full, four-year medical program leading to the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO)
degree and a Master of Science in Biomedical Sciences degree. PCOM is a private, not-for-profit
institution which trains professionals in the health and behavioral sciences fields.
Joining PCOM Georgia in Suwanee in helping to meet the healthcare needs of the state,
PCOM South Georgia focuses on educating physicians for the South Georgia region. The
medical campus, which welcomed its inaugural class of medical students in August 2019,
has received accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association's Commission
on Osteopathic College Accreditation. For more information, visit pcom.edu/southgeorgia or call 229-668-3110.
For more information, contact:
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Office: 229-668-3198 | Cell: 229-873-2003
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