Operation Border Health/Preparedness to offer free health care service next week

Resident of all Valley counties can expect to get the same services they received last year during Operation Border Health/Preparedness, scheduled for July 26 through 30. (Courtesy photo)

Operation Border Health/Preparedness is around the corner, so get ready to receive a number of free health care services.

Formerly known as Operation Lone Star, OBHP is scheduled to take place July 26 through 30 in three Rio Grande Valley counties: Willacy, Cameron and Starr. In Hidalgo County, the services will be operational from July 25-29.

One of the main goals of the six-day event is to get area residents prepared in case any health emergency strikes the region.

The Texas Department of State Health Services, TDSHS, is spearheading the initiative. Due to the recent increase in COVID-19 cases, wearing face masks and keeping social distance are being recommended.

Health officials said they added Saturday to give people the opportunity to get the services during a weekend day.

These services include:

>> General physician services

>> Immunizations for children and adults

>> Screenings: diabetic, hearing, vision, blood pressure

>> Sports physicals

>> Dental services and vision exams for prescription glasses for adults and children.

The time for each of the OBHP clinics is from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, July 25-29, and for those open on Saturday, July 30, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

The sites for each clinic are as follows:

In Cameron County:

>> Harlingen School of Health Professions, 2302 N. 21st Street, Harlingen;

>> James Pace Early College High School, 314 W Los Ebanos Blvd., Brownsville.

In Hidalgo County:

>> PSJA Early College High School 805 West Ridge Road, San Juan.

In Willacy County:

>> Raymondville High School, 601 FM 3168, Raymondville.

In Starr County:

>> Ac2E Elementary School, 1 S. Fort Ringgold, Rio Grande City.

House pets are also eligible to get treatment at zero cost from a team of experts from Texas A&M University in College Station. 

But only Willacy County will offer preventative veterinarian services. A team from TAMU treated 735 cats and dogs all free of charge last year.

Among the services that will be available for pets includes wellness exams, five types of vaccines, internal and external parasite treatments, heartworm and tick-borne disease testing and management of existing health-related issues.

Residents from the other four counties are welcome to bring their pets to the Willacy County clinic.

Although OBHP is offering the services in all four counties, anyone can stop by at any of the sites, regardless of where they live.

In 2021, a total of 4,756 people received 21,602 health services.

Tony Vindell is the Public Information Officer for Willacy County. He may be contacted by telephone at 956- 543-7027 or by e-mail at [email protected].

Editor’s note: This story has been corrected throughout to reflect the accurate time and dates of the event.