Where did you complete your internship? I completed my internship at Cabarrus Health Alliance. The agency serves as the Public Health Authority providing essential public health services for residents living in Cabarrus and neighboring counties.
What were your duties as an intern? During my internship, I worked closely with the Quality Improvement and Accreditation Program manager to identify performance measures that will be used to track programs in multiple departments at the agency. These measures are used by the Executive Management Team members to easily identify areas of success and those that need further improvement. I planned and co-facilitated a training demonstration for program supervisors using Clear Impact software which the agency will use to track performance measures. I was also tasked with performing weekly analysis of the Clinic voicemail callback logs to identify average time between calls as a way of improving customer service.
How do you feel this internship has prepared you to work in the field? This experience helped me gain a better understanding of how different departments within the agency collaborate in order to best serve their target population. During my internship, I had the opportunity to do extensive observations both in the clinical and administrative settings. I was also able to learn about the activities involved as part of the accreditation process. Finally, I was able to enhance my public speaking, communication and networking skills.
Concentration: Community Health Practice
Where did you complete your internship? I completed my internship at HealthReach Community Clinic in Mooresville, NC. HealthReach is Iredell County's only free clinic and serves individuals who are at or below 250% of the Federal Poverty Level and do not have any form of health insurance (including Medicare and Medicaid). The clinic does not charge for any of its services, and provides care including but not limited to lab work, chiropractic care, psychiatry, physical therapy, routine medical visits, and medications, both prescription and over-the-counter.
What were your duties as an intern? I had a wide range of duties during my time as an intern at HealthReach. My main goal was to work on expanding community outreach efforts and increasing clinic enrollment. I worked with a team of interns to visit approximately 200 locations throughout Iredell County, where we posted flyers and spread awareness about the clinic and how it benefits the community. I also developed materials that are being used within the clinic to inform patients about community resources, ranging from substance use and housing to food services and legal assistance. I contributed to the policies and procedures manual for HealthReach and developed an updated referrals spreadsheet to streamline the referrals process. I also participated in several outreach events, such as working alongside Atrium's Wellness on Wheels bus, and coordinated appointments for patients to get free eye exams from Prevent Blindness NC and mammograms from Novant Health.
How do you feel this internship has prepared you to work in the field? This internship prepared me immensely for the work that I will be doing after graduation. Since I was able to get my hands into a bunch of different projects, I was exposed to many different aspects of public health. I had to actively recall information that I had learned in the classroom during my undergraduate and graduate education, and then apply this knowledge into different situations over the course of the summer. I plan to focus on community health after graduation and this internship not only suited my interests but also gave me freedom to explore different topics and learn about the practical application of public health in my community.
Where did you complete your internship? I completed my internship at the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services in the Communicable Disease Branch. Our role was to provide epidemiologic surveillance for reportable infectious diseases in North Carolina.
What were your duties as an intern? My two primary roles were to edit, update, and complete the North Carolina Annual Report on Vaccine Preventable Diseases. The report is published every year on the NCDHHS website to give anyone interested a breakdown of vaccine preventable disease numbers in the state for any given year.
How do you feel this internship has prepared you to work in the field? This internship gave me a real-world experience dealing with outbreak investigations, epidemiological surveillance, and policy initiation at the state level.