NorthShore Health Centers continued their National Health Centers Week celebrations on Thursday, throwing a huge bash called the “Patient Appreciation Health and Fun Fair” at their Portage Scottsdale location.
The NorthShore Patient Appreciation Health and Fun Fair serves to reach out to the community and inform them of the services that they and their partner vendors can provide, as well as to give the community a fun and exciting atmosphere where attendees can receive information about various common health risks and resources.
The celebration, which was the second such event this week after Tuesday’s celebration in Lake Station, included bouncy castles, appearances by The Game Truck and the Kona Ice Truck, and a new feature called “Teddy Bear Checkups,” where children who may be afraid or concerned about visiting the doctor’s or dentist's office can bring their teddy bears or doll with them to undergo the same types of checkups they do. This allows kids to see the equipment and gain a better understanding of the procedures while hopefully alleviating some of their fears.
The Game Truck is a new addition to the Health and Fun Fair this year, providing a trailer full of comfy couches, HD TVs, and various modern video game consoles for kids to play exciting and popular video games.
The Kona Ice Truck was donating 20% of their earnings to NorthShore’s “Jean Fund,” a fund that helps Northshore patients who may not be able to afford their treatments to get the help they need.
The vendors in attendance provided fun games for the attendees, as well as a face painting station, That was something Latilya Evans, a first-time attendee to the fun fair, and her family took advantage of, getting awesome superhero-inspired designs making them look like Batgirl and Wonder Woman.
“I was actually just going down the street and I saw all the bouncy houses,” said Evans, whose entire family are patients at NorthShore, “I said ‘Let’s go over here and see what’s going on.”
Evans was more than happy to provide a fun and relaxing day for her family, as well as learn a few things about their health along the way.
“It’s nice; it’s very informative,” she said, “It’s good that the different vendors came out to promote and let the community know what’s going on.”
Rachel Mullins, Director of Practice Improvements at NorthShore Health Centers, was present providing information about their Patient Care Coordination Program and how each NorthShore location is now a Patient Centered Medical Home.
“The Patient Care Coordination Program is focused on bridging the gap with patients and their care,” Mullins said, “Obviously we want them to improve their health outcomes, but most of the time it’s stuff outside that they don’t have access to, that we help them get access to.”
Northshore assists patients in getting access to information they wouldn’t otherwise be privy to, such as dietary information.
“So they’re not eating right, and that’s why their health is poor,” said Mullins, “so how can we help them eat right? That’s the biggest part of the program, is just connecting the dots with the patients, not just within the clinic but outside as well.”
Gervay Dickerson, Lead Event Coordinator and Lead Outreach Coordinator for NorthShore Health Centers, was handing out goodies to the kids as they entered the event.
“Any type of organization or resource that our families could use were invited out today,” said Dickerson, “This event is all about reaching out to families in the community, reaching our patients to show them some appreciation, and to let them know that we really, truly appreciate them.”
“Summer is almost over and kids will soon be back in school so we really wanted to have a celebration for them, but also we encourage them to not forget about the health aspect,” added Dickerson.
“National Health Centers Week is a big event celebrating community health centers, so we really love to be involved and get in on the celebration every year,” said Tricia Hall, Marketing Manager at NorthShore Health Centers. “We find that this is a great way to bring the community together and to provide them with a free, safe event.”
To find out more about NorthShore Health Centers, visit: www.northshorehealth.org/