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Bi-State Development and the St. Louis County Department of Public Health last week unveiled Links 2 Health, a new mobile health van that will visit four Metro Transit centers once a week to help improve North St. Louis County residents' access to health care services.The Links 2 Health van's weekly visits include the Rock Road MetroLink Station in Pagedale, Missouri. Health screenings and assessments — such as blood pressure and diabetes testing — will be offered free of charge to adults 18 years and older.Links 2 Health is an 18-month pilot program created by Bi-State Development through its not-for-profit enterprise, Bi-State Development Research Institute. Bi-State Development is the parent company of Metro Transit in St. Louis, which provides MetroBus and MetroLink rail service.In fall 2016, the institute received a $940,000 federal grant to develop the pilot program and mobile health unit, which will be operated by the St. Louis County Department of Public Health.The grant came from the Federal Transit Administration's Rides to Wellness initiative, which emphasizes public transportation as a strategy to help people gain access to non-emergency health services."At Bi-State Development, we are committed to working with community leaders and partners to improve the quality of life for transit riders and residents around our region," said Bi-State Development President and Chief Executive Officer John Nations in a press release. "The Links 2 Health pilot program can help create an important bridge for those who need better access to health care resources."Following screenings, adults in need will also be provided assistance in applying for health insurance and making primary-care appointments for follow-up with health-care providers accessible via Metro Transit. Patients will receive a one-time Metro pass to get to and from their first follow-up appointment.
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