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Central Georgia’s “Operation: Get Healthy” is Underway

June 27, 2014

The Central Georgia Medical Reserve Corps (CGMRC) conducted its second health screenings and education event  June 18th at the Macon VFW Post 9709 as part of their  “Operation: Get Healthy” Initiative. The project is made possible by National Association of City and County Health Officials (NACCHO) challenge grant award of $20,000.00.   Central Georgia MRC volunteers conduct free health screenings and provide health education for participants of the Macon VFW Post 9709’s monthly food giveaway.

The Central Georgia Medical Reserve Corps tag-teamed with Macon VFW Post 9709’s food giveaway to “bring additional resources to a population that may not be covered by insurance,” explains CGMRC Registered Nurse Volunteer Mary Prior.

“It helps us reach a vulnerable population that otherwise would not have access to these screenings.”

The overall goal of “Operation: Get Healthy” is to give the participants their results and educate them on how to prevent or self-manage heart disease and diabetes.

Blood glucose, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels of participants are taken by volunteers of the CGMRC team. Once levels are recorded, volunteers help to further explain what their numbers mean in relevance to their status of health. “We can recommend to them that based on their current health they may need to seek medical attention whether it be immediately, within a week, or by a month’s time,” says Prior.

Other information on food nutrients, such as what their body may be lacking and what they should be eating is also provided to participants by the CGMRC volunteers. This one-on-one counseling gives individuals the attention they need.

The MRC Challenge Award funds MRC units to carry out innovative projects in their communities that can be replicated on a national level and align with one of four focus areas: community resilience; chronic disease prevention; partners for empowered communities; and mental and emotional well-being.

Among nearly 200 MRC units across the United States to apply, the Central Georgia Medical Reserve Corps was within the top 29 most promising applicants receiving awards totaling $600,000 to implement the proposed initiatives.

The first joint food giveaway and health screening event was held on May 21st and ended successfully with 56 screenings, according to CGMRC volunteer, Jewel Wilson. With 26 returning participants and 24 new, participants of the June event received food, toiletries, clothing, health screenings and nutritious food education at the VFW Post 9709.

The Central Georgia Medical Reserve Corps is very excited about the work they have done so far and thanks to their $20,000 Challenge Award, they will be able to continue to perform their monthly screenings at the Macon VFW Post 9709.

For more information on the Medical Reserve Corps, please visit www.medicalreservecorps.gov. For more information about CGMRC, visit www.northcentralhealthdistrict.org/emergency-preparedness/cgmrc.