LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (Ark. Dept. of Health) - The Arkansas Department of Health is offering voluntary health assessments to residents of the Mayflower community who continue to have health concerns they believe may be related to the oil spill in Mayflower on March 29, 2013. The assessments will use a combination of personal interviews with a nurse and modern telemedicine with a physician to connect Mayflower residents with the care they need.

The assessments will be offered by appointment beginning September 3 at the Faulkner County Health Unit and will be offered daily between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Appointments may be made by calling the Faulkner County Health Unit at 501-450-4941.

The health assessment will ask questions related to symptoms that have developed since the Mayflower oil spill, current health status and pre-existing conditions. All information will be confidential.

Following initial interviews, residents may be scheduled for further evaluations via telemedicine resources with specialists from the Department of Health and University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS). Residents will not be charged for health assessments at local health units or for telemedicine. Telemedicine uses interactive video and audio teleconferencing to securely connect medical professionals to patients in the local community. This helps eliminate barriers such as distance and transportation. Telemedicine technology is currently used very successfully by local health departments in Arkansas to connect high-risk pregnant women with specialists at UAMS so they do not have to leave their community for care.

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