SMU Students Provide Free Health Screening to Himalayan Refugees

Samuel Merritt University

Media Relations Contact:
Elizabeth Valente   510.725.7980
April 3, 2009

SMU Students Provide Free Health Screening to Himalayan Refugees

(OAKLAND, Calif., April 3, 2009) When Samuel Merritt University (SMU) Associate Professor Valerie Dzubur, EdD, FNP-C. learned about the challenges that immigrants from Nepal face in the U.S, she thought of the displaced people who had landed in the Bay Area. With San Francisco designated as a refugee resettlement city and with today's economic recession, "it occurred to me that these families, who may be undocumented, have fallen into the healthcare gap and do not have access to care."

That is why students and faculty from the University's Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) program and, a Bay Area Nepalese alliance nonprofit group, are organizing a free health screening day for uninsured Nepalese on April 5 at the Davis Street Family Resource Center in San Leandro.

The all-day event will have nearly two dozen FNP students from the University who will screen people from the Nepal, Bhutan, and Tibetan communities for diabetes, hypertension, asthma, sexually transmitted infections, gout, musculoskeletal injuries, and more. Health referrals, education, and resources will also be provided at the event.

"Many of these people have been displaced from their homeland due to political unrest, and we want to be able to provide support," says Dr. Dzubur. "The primary care service we provide supports the University's value to serve the underserved."

Funding for the project comes in part from the Scott Beamer Community Service grant, student fundraisers, and the nonprofit group.

"The support has been strong," says Dr. Dzubur. "Thanks to the funding we are able to extend this primary care service to the Himalayan community until the end of the year."

Family Nurse Practitioners are licensed and fully qualified to diagnose minor illness and injury, perform health assessments, and order necessary tests. In addition, they can prescribe prescriptions and monitor chronic disease conditions. A large part of what nurse practitioners provide is preventive care and education. For more information about Samuel Merritt University and the FNP program log onto the school's website





April 5, 2009, Sunday, at 10:00 am – 5:00 pm


SMU nursing students will provide free health screening/assessment to uninsured and low-income immigrants from the Himalayan community living in the Bay Area.


Davis Street Family Resource Center

3081 Teagarden Street, San Leandro

(510) 347.4620

Samuel Merritt University, founded in 1909, has been educating health professionals for 100 years. The University offers an undergraduate degree in nursing; master's degrees in nursing, occupational therapy, physician assistant; and doctoral degrees in physical therapy and podiatric medicine.

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