Local 24 News Reporter Brittani Moncrease visited the campus Tuesday and spoke with administrators behind the project.
For the first time, Lemoyne-Owen College students will no longer have to go into the city for medical care. They can get help right on campus.
What happens when an historically black college and a prominent medical institution unite? Access.
Lemoyne-Owen College and Methodist Le Bonheur hospital came together to open the school’s first health and wellness center, which Methodist’s Dr. Albert Mosley describes as a game changer.
“For us here at Methodist, one of our greatest concerns is doing what we can to address what we know are significant health disparities here in the Mid-South and even beyond,” said Dr. Mosley, Methodist’s Senior Vice President and Chief Mission Integration Officer.
COVID-19 revealed many of those disparities.
“Opening this clinic on the campus of Lemoyne-Owen College is what we believe to be, gets us one step closer addressing some of those health disparities,” said Dr. Mosley.
The college’s Interim President, Dr. Carol Johnson Dean, said efforts to open a clinic started after administrators began brainstorming how students could safely return to campus.
“Having the health clinic in partnership with Methodist Le Bonheur - they give us advice. Because we’ve never set up a clinic, they really helped us set up a clinic to make sure we had all the PPE we needed,” said Dr. Johnson Dean. “We have now the rapid test available, and we also have flu vaccines available.”
In the past, students had to travel for health care.
“We actually sent our students down to a clinic and they got their health care services. There was nothing on campus,” said Dr. Johnson Dean.
Now the campus can meet basic health needs.
“The clinic is staffed by a registered nurse. That registered nurse is able to do your normal triaging. The nurse is also able to perform, if needed, immunizations,” said Dr. Mosley.
When it comes to COVID, the health center and pandemic protocols have proven useful.
“We’re very fortunate that our students now staying in the dorm have tested negative and not have had the virus,” said Dr. Johnson Dean.
The classes at the college are remote, but there are some students who decided to stay on campus in the dormitories.