Out and About: DMU Serves the Community

2017 Des Moines Marathon

Part of DMU's 2017 Year in Review

A look back at some of the DMU's accomplishments and highlights from the year.

Outreach events held throughout the semester, such as post-race treatments at the IMT Des Moines Marathon, medical services at Living History Farms’ Off-Road Race, screenings at the DMU “50 and Better” Senior Health Fair and hands-on activities during Girls in Science Day offer experiential learning that helps students practice patient interactions – and gives DMU a community engagement boost.

Students say they appreciate the opportunity to bring their clinical skills out of a classroom context. Many were surprised by Senior Health Fair attendees’ optimism and interest and were excited to serve a geriatric population with more health concerns than their peers.

“Many of the patients I did a foot screening on ‘failed’ the monofilament test for peripheral sensation,” says Alex Bischoff, D.P.M.‘20. “Explaining to them what that meant and what was going on in their body was such a cool experience. To that point, I had only practiced these tests on my fellow students and had yet to see any pathology.”

DMU’s partnership with Ethnic Minorities of Burma Advocacy and Resource Center helped a small group of refugees overcome a transportation barrier to participate in the Senior Health Fair. As a result, students were also able to see a more diverse group of patients.

“I took a blood pressure reading on an older gentleman who didn’t speak English,” says Marcus Zeitz, D.O.’21. “With the help of a younger relative of his, I was able to communicate to him what the reading meant and what he could do to follow up with his primary care provider about it.”

At the Living History Farms’ Off-Road Race, students provided first aid to a runner who was kicked in the head when a deer leapt over him. At the IMT Des Moines Marathon, students volunteered with finish line first aid, were onsite for foot and ankle care and provided post-race treatments in a “recovery zone” staffed by both physical therapy and osteopathic medical students. This year, students treated more than 200 athletes, from first-time marathoners to a woman who had just completed her 100th.

“For someone running a full marathon to tell me the muscle treatments for their hip flexors were significantly helpful satisfied me that the teachings I am receiving are effective,” says Pardeep Singh, D.O.’20.

The ability to team up with classmates and learn from faculty at the event allows students to observe treatment styles and enhance their practice.

“One patient had been dealing with the same kind of muscle soreness every time she finished a race, and my partner and I showed her a stretch she had never seen or used before,” says Emily Ruth, D.P.T.’20. “She thought it worked really well, and it was great to experience how my problem-solving skills and knowledge can improve people’s lives.”

Part of DMU's 2017 Year in Review

A look back at some of the DMU's accomplishments and highlights from the year.

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