Western Carolina University is extending its Mountain Area Pro Bono Health Services through an Asheville clinic, beginning Friday, June 11.
The student-led physical therapy service treats uninsured or under-insured individuals, regardless of socioeconomics or health status.
The clinic will be located at Biltmore Village and operate 2-5 p.m. on alternating Fridays.
The service, also known as MAPHealth, began in 2014 on the first floor of WCU’s Health and Human Sciences building on Little Savannah Road. Students in the Doctor of Physical Therapy program diagnose movement dysfunction that interferes with quality of life at any age, design treatment plans to restore and optimize function and prevent disability and promote healthy lifestyles and injury prevention.
“Opening the MAPHealth pro bono clinic in Asheville is a great way of expanding WCU’s community presence in the greater Western North Carolina region,” said Sebastian Faundez, a program senior. “Through this clinic, we can continue our mission of serving historically underserved and underrepresented communities in the area who may not have been able to make the drive to the WCU campus in Cullowhee.”
The students also will now provide telehealth services as well as mobile services.
“The clinic started as an extra-curricular pro bono service to the community and has evolved into an integral part of the program,” said Dave Hudson, head of WCU’s Physical Therapy Department. “It is service learning at its best, where faculty and community clinicians mentor students as they provide free care to those in need. The addition of the Asheville clinic in partnership with PT Solutions will add more learning opportunities for students and strengthen our ties to the community.”
"I am amazed how much our clinic has grown in the last year," said Ashley Hyatt, assistant professor of physical therapy. "We added nutrition services to the clinic so now we offer social work, physical therapy, and nutrition. During the peak of the pandemic, we also transitioned to offering physical therapy and social work appointments via telehealth which we will continue to provide for individuals who have challenges with transportation or prefer this option. With all of this growth and the addition of the Asheville location, we are able to meet even more of the needs of those in western North Carolina. I am so proud and appreciative of the students, faculty, and advisory board for all of the work they have put into this exponential growth."
For more information or to make an appointment, call 828-227-3527 or firstname.lastname@example.org.