Mobile medical unit providing free ultrasound, STD testing
DOWAGIAC — The Pregnancy Helpline of Three Rivers is bringing free services to Dowagiac women through its mobile medical unit.
The organization, headquartered at 172 E. Michigan Ave. in Three Rivers, is providing free lab-grade pregnancy tests via the mobile medical unit for women who expect they may be pregnant from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Wednesday in the Harding’s Marketplace parking lot, 102 Park Place, Dowagiac. In the event of a positive pregnancy test, the unit provides a free limited obstetrical ultrasound to confirm a viable pregnancy.
The mobile medical unit is fully equipped with medically trained testing specialists and state-of-the-art pregnancy testing equipment. Walk-ins are welcome, and appointments can be made by calling or texting the mobile unit’s phone number (269) 816-2700.
“If they’re eight to 20 weeks pregnant, we can do an ultrasound to show them their baby,” said family nurse practitioner Laura Russo. “We can see their baby’s heartbeat and we can send them home with pictures. We just want to support them and let them know that we’re here to support them and answer questions they may have about their baby and their pregnancy.”
In addition to ultrasounds and pregnancy tests, the organization also offers sexually transmitted disease testing and education options.
The service is a collaboration with Image Clear Ultrasound, a nonprofit organization that exists to serve women and their families across the country by providing free, safe and effective pregnancy testing.
“Our executive director came up with this idea about a year ago,” said Pregnancy Helpline of Three Rivers executive assistant Tamera Frankel. “The mobile medical industry is really taking off across the country, so she thought she would pursue this and see what comes of it.”
After raising the necessary funds to purchase the mobile medical unit, the vehicle hit the road in January to provide its services to women in the area.
“We knew we wanted to do more of an outreach in this area,” Frankel said. “Especially if they don’t have transportation and couldn’t get to Three Rivers or our partners in Niles. We chose this area because we want to provide this service to girls in this community.”
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