April 30, 2007

Student wins first place in national essay contest

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. – Alicia S. Gallegos, a senior at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, is the first-place winner in the 2007 American College of Healthcare Executives Essay Competition. Gallegos, a senior in health care management, received her award in New Orleans.

Gallegos, of Golf, took top honors with "Retail Medicine: the Cure for Healthcare Disparities?" Entries from undergraduate health services administration programs throughout the nation competed for the award. Rounding out the top three places were entries from the University of South Dakota and the University of Alabama -Tuscaloosa.

As first-prize winner, Gallegos receives a $3,000 cash award along with a plaque. In addition, the "Journal of Healthcare Management" will publish her essay. Gallegos is the daughter of Andres J. Gallegos and Donna Gallegos.

"The focus of the essay is that retail medical clinics, in conjunction with continued education and the utilization of these clinics, can be one of the solutions to reducing health care disparities in the United States," said Patrick A. Rivers, director of the health care management program at SIUC. "Health services administrators will read Ms. Gallegos' work and be able to draw some practical uses from it."