University Getting ‘S.H.O.W.’ on the Road


Ribbon Cutting Planned July 17 for S.H.O.W. Mobile

Photo of S.H.O.W. Mobile

A ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil the S.H.O.W. Mobile is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. July 17 in the atrium of Robert A. Dempster Hall at Southeast Missouri State University.(View larger image of the S.H.O.W. Mobile)


July 7, 2006 – Residents in rural areas in Southeast Missouri will now receive additional health care assistance thanks to Southeast Missouri State University’s new mobile health unit, Southeast Health On Wheels, known as the S.H.O.W. Mobile.

A ribbon cutting ceremony to unveil the unit is scheduled for 8:30 a.m. July 17 in the atrium of Robert A. Dempster Hall. A continental breakfast will begin prior to the event at 8 a.m. Participating in the ceremony will be U.S. Sen. Jim Talent, U.S. Rep. Jo Ann Emerson, Southeast Missouri State University President Kenneth W. Dobbins and Bobbi Morris, APRN MSN BC-FNP, director of the S.H.O.W. Mobile and a member of the Southeast Department of Nursing.

The unit will be on display in the parking lot on the south side of Dempster Hall after the ceremony. The public is invited to the breakfast and ceremony, and to tour the unit at the conclusion of the event.

The S.H.O.W. Mobile is a 38-foot mobile health center outfitted with medical equipment thanks to a federally directed earmark supported by the Missouri Congressional delegation. The unit will travel in the four Bootheel counties of Pemiscot, Dunklin, Mississippi and New Madrid.  Staffed by a family nurse practitioner, registered professional nurse driver and local volunteer healthcare professionals, this mobile health unit will educate residents on health promotion and disease prevention and will provide health and dental services, including care for acute and chronic illnesses to those who have little or no access to services.

“The Missouri Foundation for Health has conducted several forums in the Bootheel and has found that the primary issue related to access to health care is transportation,” Morris said. “This finding was the primary motivation for Senator Talent and Representative Emerson to support this vehicle. This is a phenomenal opportunity for individuals to reduce or eliminate barriers to health care.”

Morris says the University expects the S.H.O.W. Mobile to have a positive impact on the region’s economy by improving the overall level of health care in the potential work force. She says the goals are to increase the number of Bootheel residents who receive primary medical and dental care; decrease chronic disease through health education, screening and care; decrease the number of employee and student sick days because of personal or family illness; increase access to health care by increasing convenience to a health care facility and decreasing transportation barriers; and provide service to rural residents who do not have health insurance or money to pay for care.

The S.H.O.W. Mobile is a pilot project that will serve as the foundation of a structure to promote and enhance the health of disadvantaged residents in selected rural communities. The unit was built by Mobile Medical and Command Center Vehicles in Newton, Texas. Prior to its arrival at Southeast, the unit was featured at the 11th Annual International Meeting and Exposition on Telemedicine and Telehealth May 7-10 in San Diego, Calif.

In addition to the unit’s family nurse practitioner, registered professional nurse and local volunteer healthcare professionals, staffing on the unit will include a support team of professionals and student interns from the University’s College of Health and Human Services from its departments of nursing; human environmental studies; health, human performance and recreation; communication disorders; social work; and criminal justice and sociology. University officials say the students will provide tremendous support for the unit, and, at the same time, will gain valuable clinical experiential learning opportunities.

Morris says the unit will offer well-child exams; well-woman exams; pre-employment and pre-participation sports physicals; care for acute illnesses such as ear, skin, urinary tract and sinus infections; care for chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, asthma and high cholesterol; and nutrition and dietary assessments. The S.H.O.W. Mobile has formed collaborative partnerships with nearly 100 care providers in the area to whom patients may be referred whose needs might exceed the ability of the mobile medical unit.

“Our goal is not to duplicate services, but to partner with service agencies to extend services,” Morris said.

One of those partnerships has paved the way for the S.H.O.W. Mobile to offer a telemedicine program in cooperation with the University of Missouri-Columbia Telehealth Program. This will allow care providers on the unit to consult with a physician in real-time should a question arise or a second opinion is requested.

Morris said an outstanding team of professionals has been hired to staff the unit. They include Sandy Ortiz, program manager who will run the on-campus S.H.O.W. Mobile office at 403 Pacific in Cape Girardeau; Susan Smith, a family nurse practitioner with extensive experience in family and women’s health issues; and Cliff Jordan, who will drive the unit and also has health care experience.

Morris says the unit will hit the road July 18 and will be available at selected sites convenient to residents with limited mobility due to transportation barriers. The S.H.O.W. Mobile will be at the following locations from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on an ongoing basis:

Tuesdays:  New Madrid CountyCommunity Center203 S. BroadParma, Mo.Wednesdays: Pemiscot CountyApostolic Lighthouse Pentecostal Church303 S. WalnutSteele, MoAlternating Thursdays:

  • Dunklin CountyTrinity Community ChurchOne-Step MinistriesCardwell, Mo.
  • Dunklin CountyCampbell Housing Authority930 PoplarCampbell, Mo.

Fridays: Mississippi County At the Bowden Center in the old Lincoln High School in Charleston, Mo.3rd Saturday of the Month:

Pemiscot CountyOasis Center in Caruthersville, Mo.

Morris says the cost of services on the unit will be based on the client’s ability to pay. The S.H.O.W. Mobile will serve individuals with Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance or without third party health care coverage. Fees for those without third party cover age will be based on a sliding scale fee.

Individuals interested in being seen for care on the S.H.O.W. Mobile may make an appointment by calling the S.H.O.W. Mobile at 1-(888) 895-7469 or, after July17, they may call the S.H.O.W. Mobile office at (573) 651-5980.  Appointments also can be made at Delta Area Economic Opportunity Corporation (DAEOC) county offices. Phone numbers for DAEOC county offices are as follows: Dunklin County, (573) 888-9230; New Madrid County, (573) 748-5680; Mississippi County, (573) 649-2441; and Pemiscot County, (573) 359-1030. Patients also will be seen on a walk-up basis as time allows, Morris said.

Photo of the back of the SHOW Mobile

The S.H.O.W. Mobile will serve individuals with Medicare, Medicaid, private insurance or without third party health care coverage.(View larger image of the back of the S.H.O.W. Mobile)

Photo of woman in the SHOW Mobile

The S.H.O.W. Mobile will offer a variety of exams, treatments and dietary assessments.(View larger image of the inside of the S.H.O.W. Mobile)