East Bay Nursing Students Embark On A Mission To Provide Free Healthcare To Villagers In Southeast Asia

Samuel Merritt College


East Bay Nursing Students Embark On A Mission To Provide Free Healthcare To Villagers In Southeast Asia


(OAKLAND, Calif., August 4, 2008) Accompanied by four Samuel Merritt College (SMC) faculty, more than a dozen Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) students will travel to Southeast Asia this month to provide free healthcare services to local Hmong villagers in northern Laos. This is the third year the Oakland based College has conducted the medical mission trip overseas, organized by the program's associate professor, Valerie Dzubur, EdD, FNP-C.

"As a nursing educator, my job is to make a contribution to the development of a new generation of nurse practitioners," said Dr. Dzubur.

Dr. Dzubur has been teaching in the FNP program at SMC since 2001. She focuses on health screening, preventive care, and advanced health assessment. On August 11th, Dr. Dzubur will lead 25 people on a two-week excursion to local hospitals, orphanages, and villages in and around Vientiane, the capitol of Laos. The trip is part of the programs new course, "Interpreting Healthcare in a Global World." The one-unit elective is an opportunity for the FNP students to travel to places like Laos and Thailand to develop cultural understandings in international healthcare.

Along with providing free medical checkups, the program will support the local community. In recent trips, Dr. Dzubur, through work with the Wind Horse Foundation, has helped build a preschool and sponsored a small orphanage. The foundation has also bought land in Thailand to create farming projects. This year the FNP group is helping a local public hospital by buying them a gurney. In conjunction with medical supplies for the clinical screenings, the group also brings bags of clothing, books and vitamin supplements for the villagers.

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 College and the FNP program log onto the school's website www.samuelmerritt.edu.

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

Interview and Photo Opt:

On August 5, Tuesday, the FNP students will be packing supplies for the trip at Samuel Merritt College.

Interviews with SMC faculty and students will be made available from 2:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Interviews will be held in Town Court-1, inside the Health Education Center (HEC) located at 400 Hawthorne Street, Oakland.

For more
information please contact

Elizabeth Valente
Associate Director of Publications and Media


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