CSUSM Nursing Students Bring Healing to Oceanside
By Margaret Chantung
The poor, homeless and uninsured populations of San Diego’s North County coastal region now have access to basic medical care thanks to CSUSM nursing students and a generous donation from St. Anne’s Episcopal Church.
The new nursing clinic in Oceanside opened on Monday, Dec. 16 in the nearby church’s 1,600-square-foot house, donated for use by the School of Nursing’s Student Healthcare Project.
The student-run clinics will provide hygienic care products and over-the-counter medications to clients. Under the supervision of nursing faculty and a medical director, students will also help provide basic wound care, healthcare screenings, social service referrals and discount prescriptions for generic drugs.
“These clinics have two clear purposes that overlap with each other,” said CSUSM School of Nursing Director Denise Boren. “The first purpose is to be of service to the community. Our clients are indigent and have a lot of barriers that prevent them from receiving medical care. At our clinics, they see a friendly face and get connected to that care that many so desperately need. The second purpose is to provide our students with diverse, hands on experiences that prepare them to be better, more compassionate and competent nurses.”
The partnership with St. Anne’s Episcopal Church was vital in the opening of this clinic. Bishop James Mathes says that the church’s mission is, “to bring hope and healing to those in need” and that the clinic is a clear way that these nursing students can give the gift of healing.
The Student Healthcare Project already operates two other free clinics in San Diego’s Ocean Beach community and is focused on serving the working poor and under/uninsured residents of San Diego County in a respectful and compassionate manner.
Over 10 percent—or 18,000—of Oceanside’s residents live below the poverty line, so the clinic plans to be busy as more locals are made aware of its services.
For more information on the Student Healthcare Project and for clinic locations and hours, visit www.csusm.edu/nursing.