Characterizing the Community Collaborations of a Community-Based Student-Run Clinic

J Prim Care Community Health. 2020 Jan-Dec:11:2150132720984400. doi: 10.1177/2150132720984400.


Introduction: Community-based student-run free clinics (SRCs) can advance health on a community level by reaching populations not served by other organizations and serving as an access point to the healthcare system. However, little is known about the scope of community-engaged efforts undertaken by SRCs, including interorganizational partnerships and relationship-building activities. The primary objective of this study was to characterize the community collaborations of an interprofessional SRC located in a high-poverty area.

Methods: Qualitative data was collected through semi-structured interviews with key stakeholders, which included student volunteers holding leadership roles, representatives of community-based organizations, and current and former members of the community advisory board.

Results: Key informant interviews with student and community leaders offered insight into local community outreach activities and the community advisory board. Findings revealed opportunities to impact community health through more intentional collaboration and relationship-building.

Conclusions: This exploratory study adds to literature suggesting that community-based SRCs can address service gaps in medically underserved communities while advancing community health through intentional community engagement.

Keywords: community engagement; community health; health promotion; qualitative research; student-run clinic; underserved community.

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Leadership
  • Student Run Clinic*
  • Students
  • Volunteers