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Zach Krauss helping a patient at Gem City Market.

Students Serve Patients at Community Grocery Store

by Bryson Durst, Student Public Relations Writer

The Doctor of Pharmacy program at Cedarville University is a demanding major, but even in the midst of classes, homework, and college life, professional pharmacy students are making time to offer free health care to community members in need.

Students from Cedarville’s chapter of the Student National Pharmaceutical Association, or SNPhA, travel to Dayton’s Gem City Market, located at 324 Salem Avenue, on the second and fourth Friday of each month from 1-4 p.m.

The students provide free blood pressure and glucose screenings, explaining the results to patients and discussing how they can work to improve their health. The SNPhA students also offer free comprehensive medical reviews during which they review a patient’s medications, explain how to take the medications, and remind patients of the benefits of sticking with their medication regimen.

Third-year pharmacy student Zach Krauss of Temple, Texas, the president of Cedarville’s SNPhA chapter, first learned about Gem City Market when it was under construction in late 2020. Krauss realized that the market fit in with SNPhA’s mission.

“SNPhA serves as an organization to help the underserved populations in our communities, and the market does a really good job at that,” Krauss said.

The market, which opened in 2021, offers affordable, fresh produce to what had formerly been a food desert, a low-income area where most of what’s available is relatively unhealthy and high-priced. In addition to affordable groceries, Gem City Market offers cooking classes, a clinic that offers affordable or free health care, and a community room. The market is a community co-op, meaning that with a one-time payment, local residents can become members-owners on the board.

Krauss has seen the impact of SNPhA’s work with patients at Gem City Market. He recalled visiting with one customer who didn’t know how to use their prescribed medications. Krauss walked the person through their medications, and by the end, Krauss could see that the patient was beginning to better understand what the medications were for.

“Sometimes our services seem very routine, but in that specific interaction I know I was able to help, and you could see that the purpose of the meds had clicked in the patient’s mind,” Krauss explained.

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is an accredited, Christ-centered, Baptist institution with an enrollment of 4,715 undergraduate, graduate, and online students in more than 150 areas of study. Founded in 1887, Cedarville is one of the largest private universities in Ohio, recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, including the Doctor of Pharmacy program, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional, and health science offerings, and high student engagement ranking. For more information about the University, visit cedarville.edu.

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