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Ohio ANG provides free medical services to Waikoloa, Hawaii

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Amy Adducchio
  • 178 FW/PA
     The 178th Medical Group, Springfield, Ohio, provided free medical services to the local community June 9 at Waikoloa Elementary School. This was one of several locations served during 178 MDG's two-week training deployment to Hawaii's Big Island.

     On this trip, patients received health assessments including measurements of height, weight, blood pressure and blood glucose. Hearing and vision screenings as well as a health history were also performed. Patients were then seen by a physician.
A 34-foot RV with two dental chairs was also available for mobile service for procedures from screenings to root canals.
Hawai'i County Councilman Pete Hoffmann, who serves on the Board of Directors for the West Hawaii Community Health Center, helped determine the location for today's event.

     "It's one of the largest areas. Also, it's 7,500 people, and I know that we have a fairly serious medical issues and a very diverse community," said Councilman Hoffmann.

     "The fact is that we are a rural community. I don't think you can anticipate how rural we can be. High school kids drive 35 miles each way to school each day. This is much like many farm communities in the United States," said Councilman Hoffmann. "I know we are 20 to 25 miles from hospitals or health services."

     Councilman Hoffman, who served approximately 28 years in the U.S. Army, took advantage of the free medical services today.

     Others made these assessments a family affair. Cindy Pua-Santiago, a local who received medical services today, brought 10 family members to the event.

     "It just started out with bring my oldest for a physical--a sports physical. After that I decided to run home and bring the entire family down," said Pua-Santiago.

     "Clearly this is an outstanding program that the Air Guard provides for us. We have serious medical issues on this island," said Councilman Hoffman.

     The unit will continue these services until the conclusion of its training deployment June 18.