Costa Layman Health Fair postponed because of pandemic

People standing in front of food
Almost 200 volunteers participated in last year's Costa Layman Health Fair in Trenton, South Carolina.

The Costa Layman Health Fair, one of two annual health service events by Augusta University’s College of Nursing for Costa Layman Farms, has been canceled this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event provides farmworkers with free personalized and preventative screenings, education and services such as glaucoma, bone density and basic health screenings, dental and skin checkups, HIV screening/blood testing and grip strength testing. The annual health fair, which is usually the last Friday in June at Costa Layman Farms in Trenton, South Carolina, has been hosted since 2005.

The outreach program provides health information for the farmworkers as well as hands-on opportunities for education and research for faculty and students. The health fair is an interdisciplinary event that spans over seven different disciplines and involves local agencies and services offering help as needed.

People talkingThe Costa Layman Health Fair had to be postponed this year.

Over the years, the program has provided more than 5,000 screenings to migrant workers. However, with the current COVID-19 restrictions in place, plans for the 15th anniversary had to be altered.

Dr. Pam Cromer, the Costa Layman Outreach Programs director, said nursing students will be working remotely with the farms toward a needs assessment/health care focused project for farmworkers that will inform future community service delivery when COVID 19 restrictions are lifted.

“With a nursing curriculum that includes a focus on rural health and disparities in health care, our nursing students are working remotely this summer with the farm leaders to complete a windshield assessment of the farm’s community (typically done on-site) to learn about the farming operations, its workers and the Hispanic culture as a required course component,” Cromer said.

The students will work on collecting secondary data from Trenton, the impact COVID-19 has had on the area and compare it with the national and state statistics for South Carolina and Georgia.

One set of students will take the lead on a windshield survey and assess future health care issues among the farmworkers to address. Another set of students will address the specific concerns of the population of the farm (cultural aspects and potential issues that are magnified during the COVID-19 pandemic). The two groups will then develop an executive summary and deliver a formal classroom presentation on July 17, which will be used to guide future classes in their continued work with this population.

The Costa Layman Women’s Clinic, CON’s second health service event for Costa Layman Farms, is tentatively planned for October but a decision on its future will be made at a later date.

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Miguelangelo Hernandez
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Miguelangelo Hernandez

Miguelangelo Hernandez is a senior communications and media coordinator at Augusta University. He covers College of Allied Health Sciences, College of Nursing, The Dental College of Georgia, College of Science and Mathematics and Augusta University Athletics. You can reach him at mighernandez@augusta.edu or (706) 993-6411.

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Miguelangelo Hernandez Written by Miguelangelo Hernandez

Jagwire is your source for news and stories from Augusta University and AU Health. Daily updates highlight the many ways students, faculty, staff, researchers and clinicians "bring their A games" in classrooms and clinics on four campuses in Augusta and locations across the state of Georgia.

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