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Our Nurses of the Week are the nursing students from West Carolina University’s School of Nursing who volunteered to provide services at a free rural health care clinic in eastern Tennessee. More than 10 students provided patients with medical, dental, and vision care. Over a thousand people attended the free clinic over a period of three days during which the clinic provided an estimated $883,456 in free medical care.

Elizabeth Sexton, WCU assistant professor of nursing and an excursion leader, tells, “These students from community mental health nursing practicum class were up at 4 a.m. to take part in the clinical services. They got exposure to it all, from triaging patients, giving flu shots to helping in the dental and vision areas. They also got to see the big picture. For whatever reason, whether lack of health insurance, lack of resources, inadequate healthy nutrition, poor dental hygiene or substance abuse, the needy individuals were there and seeking help for dental, vision and medical problems, and so appreciative to receive it.”

Remote Area Medical is a nonprofit organization based in Rockford, Tennessee, since 1985 and has held mobile clinics for uninsured and underserved families and individuals, assisted by health care professionals and students. Its mission is to prevent pain and alleviate suffering and to enhance quality of life through the delivery of competent and compassionate health care to those who are impoverished, isolated, and underserved in the US.

To learn more about the West Carolina University nursing students who volunteered to provide healthcare services at Remote Area Medical’s mobile clinic, visit here.

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