Careers in healthcare are endless, yet many high school students and middle school students are unaware of the array of jobs. Education Services opens the doors for students of all ages, cultures and backgrounds to learn about careers in medicine, nursing and allied health. The creative programs increase diversity in health professions and assist students in their investigation of a healthcare career.
Truman Medical Centers/University Health hosts two Medical Explorers Programs through the Boy Scouts of America/Exploring. High school students enjoy monthly hands-on workshops, which include suturing pig feet and putting an arm cast on a fellow Explorer. Additionally, Truman Medical Centers/University Health staff, including physicians, allied health and nursing professionals, share relevant information about their professions. High school and middle school students get an opportunity to learn about educational paths that can lead to professional school admission as well as an array of career options.
Truman Medical Centers/University Health Education Services hosts a two-week summer camp for Blue Springs Middle School students interested in a healthcare career. The camp includes hands-on activities and simulations in physical and occupational therapy, pharmacy compounding to create your own lip balm, CPR certification training and more. Additionally, physicians, allied health and nursing professionals, and others share relevant information about medical and nursing professions. High school and middle school students get an opportunity to learn about educational paths and programs that can lead to professional school admission.
Summit Technology Academy (STA), part of the Lee's Summit R-7 district, has a Pre-Allied Health program for students interested in a healthcare career. STA draws students from 25 surrounding districts, including Raytown, Blue Springs, Odessa and Kansas City, Missouri. The Career Exploration team partners with the Pre-Allied Health program to shadow varying clinics at Truman Medical Center Lakewood. Students complete clinical rotations in radiology, surgical tech, respiratory therapy and more. Students receive the unique experience of interacting with allied health professionals and broadening their understanding of potential careers.
Truman Medical Centers/University Health Community Health Strategies and Innovation Department, together with the Women's Health Department, has collaborated with Nurture KC and the Healthy Start Initiative to bring onboard a community health program nurse. This registered nurse specializes in medically high-risk pregnancies and newborn care. The Healthy Start Initiative serves 14 ZIP codes within the Kansas City metro area that have highest rates of infant mortality in the city.
The nurse educates and supports Healthy Start participants by providing adequate prenatal, postpartum and newborn care and creating solutions to overcome barriers. The collaboration strives to reduce the rates of infant and maternal mortality within the most at-risk populations in the area through prevention and health education. Education centers on the diagnosed high-risk medical condition of either the mother or infant, such as:
- Hypertensive disorders.
- Cardiovascular disease.
- Intrauterine growth restriction.
- Fetal congenital anomalies.
Your Health Is Your Wealth
The Community Health Strategies and Innovation team dedicates considerable resources in the local schools and has forged strong partnerships with the Kansas City and Independence school districts. Students at an early age must learn the importance of adopting and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The Your Health is Your Wealth curriculum was strategically designed to address four main points:
- Urban minority youth are disproportionately affected by both educational and health disparities.
- Healthier students are better learners.
- School programs and policies can favorably influence educationally relevant health disparities affecting youth.
- Now is the opportune time for change.
Your Health is Your Wealth is a 12-week curriculum designed to supplement high school health classes. The community health nurse and the nutrition education team lead several of the sessions. Truman Medical Centers/University Health professionals representing Behavioral Health and Trauma Services, among others, provide real-world experience and a hands-on teaching style to better connect with the students.
Students take midterm and final exams, as well as weekly quizzes counted as a portion of their final health grade.