“The numbers were up from last year,” said Lydia Schlabach, assistant administrator. “The weather was just beautiful for the fair... maybe that had something to do with it, too.”
Close to 700 people came to the hospital in Refugio or the two outlying clinics in Woodsboro and Austwell for the fair. A whopping 650 people took advantage of the $10 blood screening, which includes a battery of tests that normally cost hundreds of dollars.
During other health fairs, the tests have uncovered a number of potentially deadly ailments including diabetes and cancer through the screening.
“We are very happy that 56 people walked through the Wellness Center and 53 qualified for one free week of membership,” said Louis Willeke, hospital administrator.
For the first time since the Wellness Center was built, one-week free memberships were awarded to first-time visitors.
“We feel like everyone who tries out the pool and the machines will continue to take advantage of the health benefits provided by exercise,” Willeke said. “Staying active and spending time on the machines simply makes people feel better.”
This year’s health fair also saw many more younger people taking advantage of the free or low-cost tests.
“We had a big jump in the number of people in their 30s and 40s,” Schlabach said.
For 12 years the hospital has gathered people offering services, products and tests to improve the health and welfare of those who come to the health fair.
“I’m happy to see that so many people attended this year,” Willeke said. “It was a very successful fair.”