I am a Clinical Therapist with RUHS Palm Springs Family Community Center in Palm Springs, California. Before COVID-19, my primary work duties included providing behavioral health interventions to chronically ill patients struggling with mental health disorders and developing workflows for best practices in working with the chronically ill. In response to COVID-19 in our community, I have been administering a COVID-19 Screener and assessing social determinants of health in order to link patients to medical care as needed, as well as providing health education around hygiene and viruses, and mental health first aid to staff and patients dealing with anxiety due to COVID-19. In Health and Social Behavior, I gained a better understanding of social determinants of health and why they matter for mental and physical health. I also learned to understand the difference between upstream and downstream factors and what determinants to target for change. Currently, I’m working with IEHP or medical to improve transportation access for persons in rural areas seeking to get tested at a COVID-19 drive thru or to help meet their basic needs. In Environmental Health Sciences, I learned how communities are not user friendly for physical activities for older adults. I’m also currently serving as a Parks and Recreation Commissioner for the City of Coachella to help improve the infrastructure for physical activities for communities I serve.

Rosario Sabala MS, LMFT, Online MPH Fall 2018

More in category “Online MPH responds to COVID-19”: