MHM & Texas A&M Health host community conversation on study looking to improve water quality in the Rio Grande Valley

McAllen, Texas (January 25, 2023) – Methodist Healthcare Ministries and Texas A&M Health  hosted a community conversation featuring a panel discussion to explore the current status of the two important studies they launched together in April 2022. The two-year studies are examining arsenic and other toxic contaminants occurring in residential drinking water sources within colonia communities along the Rio Grande border and are also training the next generation of citizen scientists and cultivate a love of learning science for students in South Texas. 

The projects aim to test and capture measurements of existing health risks of exposure to water contaminants, develop solutions for how to reduce the risk of exposure for communities near where contaminated water is found, collect important data for the community that can be used to implement the necessary solutions and train the next generation of citizen scientists and cultivate a love of learning science for students in South Texas.

The community conversation featured a panel discussion that explored where the studies stand today, preliminary findings, and potential policy recommendations that will be shared at the conclusion of the study in 2024.  The panel included Jaime Wesolowski, president & CEO of Methodist Healthcare Ministries, John Mogford, PhD, COO and Senior Vice President of Texas A&M School of ublic Health, and Garett Sansom, DrPH, who is one of the leads on the research project.  The moderator for the panel was Texas Tribune environmental reporter, Erin Douglas.

The project is a vital first step in creating a proof of concept that will then be applied throughout the Texas-Mexico border to improve the lives of these often-overlooked communities. 

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About Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc.

Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas, Inc. is a private, faith-based not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating access to health care for the uninsured through direct services, community partnerships and strategic grant-making in 74 counties across South Texas. Guided by its mission of “Serving Humanity to Honor God,” Methodist Healthcare Ministries’ vision is to be the leader for improving wellness of the least served. The mission also includes Methodist Healthcare Ministries’ one-half ownership of the Methodist Healthcare System, the largest healthcare system in South Texas, which creates a unique avenue to ensure that it continues to be a benefit to the community by providing quality care to all and charitable care when needed. For more information, visit

About Texas A&M University Health Science Center:

Texas A&M University Health Science Center (Texas A&M Health) comprises five colleges (dentistry, medicine, nursing, pharmacy and public health) and several centers and institutes with a shared mission of advancing health care for all. We serve the state and beyond with campuses and locations in Bryan-College Station, Dallas, Temple, Houston, Round Rock, Kingsville, Corpus Christi and McAllen. Learn more at or follow @TAMUHealth on Twitter.