Outreach endeavors at the Robert C. Byrd Center for Rural Health are designed to encourage the development of new and innovative health care delivery systems in rural communities that lack essential health care services. Through partnerships with schools, churches, medical service providers, local universities, private practitioners and the like, the Center has managed to create opportunities for rural providers to get required CME, bring health check-ups to children and provide prenatal care to women in remote areas.

Marshall Medical Outreach

In our third year of operation, Marshall Medical Outreach (“MMO”) is a student-led free mobile health clinic that takes place one Saturday per month at 9 AM in the Parking lot of Trinity Episcopal Church, 520 11th Street, Huntington, WV.  The purpose of MMO is to provide medical care for the homeless and at risk for homelessness in our city.  Through partnerships with the Center for Rural Health, Marshall University School of Pharmacy, Cabell-Huntington Coalition for the Homeless/ Harmony House, the Cabell-Huntington Health Department, Ebenezer Medical Outreach, and the Bright Clinic, we have treated nearly 1,000 patients to date.  Under the supervision of Family Medicine Physician, Dr. Charles Clements, the MMO goal is to establish primary care as well as take care of other minor medical problems for the patients that present each month.  Throughout the past three years, we’ve expanded services to meet the needs of those we serve.  In addition to over-the-counter medications, prescriptions are filled under the supervision of Pharmacist, Dr. Robert Stanton, and patients receive these free of charge.  Last year, an eye screening station was added under the supervision of Ophthalmologist, Dr. Russell Fry.  The screening station is run by students in the ophthalmology interest group.  Patients are screened for eye changes caused by diabetes and hypertension, minor eye problems are treated, and patients are examined and provided free reading glasses or prescription glasses to meet their needs.  Beyond providing a necessary service, MMO is a chance for students to develop leadership skills that they can take with them into their careers as physicians.  Medical students, pharmacy students, residents, and attending physicians provide clinical services while long-term volunteers register the patients and provide needed items like coats, blankets, snacks, water, and hygiene items.  Building rapport and meeting their immediate needs is important in gaining the trust of this population.  Missy Browning, MMO Coordinator (known to the students as the “MMO Mom”), coordinates monthly MMO events, as well as special events MMO within the community, at the Mission, Harmony House, and the Cabell Breast Health Center.  She acts as the liaison between the collaborating agencies, working closely with community members and city officials to share the goals and needs of the MMO to better serve Huntington’s homeless.  Many of the items donated for MMO to distribute are collected through Facebook and email requests as well as a monthly collaboration with Qdoba Mexican Grill where the community is invited to provide needed items in exchange for a free entrée.  Our medical van driver, Ron Hackworth, is instrumental in seeing that setup and equipment run smoothly.  His efforts are invaluable to our successful operation.   http://musom.marshall.edu/students/MMO/

Founded and organized by students at Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine, Marshall Medical Outreach (MMO) is an organization that provides free medical care to the often-neglected homeless and unemployed population of Huntington.  One Saturday each month, MMO offers on-site clinical and social services such as health screenings, physical exams, immunizations, ophthalmology services, referrals, and over-the-counter medications under the guidance of JCESOM faculty physicians and steadfast community volunteers.

Our Mission: Continuity of Care to Those in Need

Despite programs set forth to address the needs of groups such as the homeless and unemployed, many still suffer from chronic and debilitating illnesses that go untreated.  Our mission at MMO is to extend our clinical resources as medical students and physicians and provide comprehensive care to these people.

Robert C. Byrd Clinical and Educational Center


In September of 2008, Marshall University was awarded a Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) facilities grant specifically for the development of a Rural Health and Education Center in southern West Virginia.  The primary purpose of the project is to provide quality family medical care.  The delivery of health care in West Virginia is hampered by sparse population, transportation barriers and unevenly distributed health care providers.  The secondary purpose is to collaborate with the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine’s Family Practice, Internal Medicine, and Pediatrics residency programs, to encourage recruitment to an area of the State that continues to struggle in recruiting primary care physicians to meet the needs of an aging population. Marshall University began work with a team of interested community members in Logan County to plan for a health center in Chapmanville in 2008.

Coalfield Health Center officially began operations in July 2009 in temporary space next to Dignity Hospice.  Coalfield Health Center is now located in a new facility on Airport Road in Chapmanville off Route 119.  It is governed by a community Board of Directors and staffed primarily by employees from Chapmanville and the surrounding area.

Clinical and Educational Mission

Coalfield Health Center provides quality primary medical care to a medically underserved community in a state-of-the-art facility which will allows enhanced opportunities for patient educational programs and serve as an outreach site for specialty services.  Coalfield Health Center also provides the infrastructure to extend and expand the Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine’s fully accredited primary care training programs to this center.  Nursing students, dental hygiene students, pre-med students and residents will have the opportunity to work with the center’s providers, and interact with community members.

Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine medical students will also have opportunities to rotate through the Center for outpatient training, introducing them to the respective area for possible residency training and subsequent practice opportunities.