March 20, 2017

KINGSVILLE, Texas — In an effort to address the growing need for diabetes education and assistance with purchasing prescription medications, the Texas A&M Coastal Bend Health Education Center teamed up with Kleberg County officials to set up programs at the county courthouse.

The organizations held a grand opening ceremony on the front steps of the Kleberg County Courthouse in March to celebrate the new collaboration.

“The Kleberg County commissioners saw the need for more education on prevailing health issues, such as diabetes, and approached Healthy South Texas to create a site in their region to address that need,” said Starr Flores, regional director of Healthy South Texas and director of the Coastal Bend Health Education Center. “The courthouse is the perfect place to have our classes because it’s well known in the community for the many services it offers.”

With uncertainty about health care pervading national politics, Judge Rudy Madrid spoke about the importance of community-based preventive health during the ceremony.

“Maybe the nation can learn from Kleberg County,” he said. “We can truly make a positive difference.”

The new diabetes education and medication assistance programs in Kleberg County provide resources and education to help residents in the area take control of their chronic conditions for a better quality of life. The multidisciplinary team of health care professionals teach about the importance of self-care, such as physical fitness, nutrition, monitoring and stress management. They work with individuals, their families and their primary care providers to develop individualized plans that help set achievable goals and milestones. All services are delivered absolutely free of charge, no insurance necessary.

As a partner of Texas A&M Healthy South Texas, the Coastal Bend Health Education Center delivers clinical and educational programs to help address some of the highest impact diseases in the region: diabetes, asthma and infectious disease.

More than 75 people attended the event, where several door prizes were given away. About 16 vendors set up tables during the festivities to promote their products and services, as well.

-Lindsey Hendrix, Les D. Cockrell