May Day takes on an entirely new meaning this year in South Dakota with a new healthcare service for rural areas of the state.

A kickoff event will take place Wednesday, May 1 in Pierre, South Dakota to launch the new Wellness on Wheels Mobile Clinics. These mobile units will be dispatched to rural and frontier areas that lack infrastructure and transportation which often prevents adequate access to public health services.

In a release by the South Dakota Department of Health, the mobile units will contain a range of vital services addressing the diverse healthcare needs of South Dakotans, particularly those facing socio-economical barriers and social determinants of health.

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What Will WOW Mobile Clinics Provide

  • Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) services: Providing families with nutrition assessment, breastfeeding support, and access to healthy foods
  • Immunizations: Ensuring children are up to date on vaccines and receiving them at appropriate times
  • Breastfeeding Support: Offering support and necessary supplies to mothers
  • Pregnancy Risk Identification: Identifying and addressing risks during pregnancy
  • Oral Health: Providing fluoride varnish to children starting from the age of 1 to address oral health concerns
  • Postpartum Nursing Care: Offering supplemental care to postpartum women in addition to their healthcare provider
  • Safe Sleep Practices: Providing safe sleep environments and best practices to families with infants
  • Developmental Screenings: Addressing developmental milestones starting from 2 months of age
  • STD Testing: Early identification of cases such as syphilis to prevent congenital syphilis

In a statement by Department of Health Secretary, Melissa Magstadt, there are significant barriers to healthcare faced by many communities in South Dakota.

"Our mobile clinics represent a proactive approach to bridging these gaps and ensuring everyone has access to services they need to thrive. By bringing healthcare directly to communities, we aim to improve health outcomes and promote wellness across the state."

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