Nursing Students Conducting Free Health Assessments in Community

August 4, 2016 -- A new component has been added to the CNM Nursing program. Second term nursing students are now going into the community to conduct free health assessments as part of their required clinical rotation experience.
August 04, 2016

Most recently, nursing students in teams of eight did hearing and vision assessments and promoted healthy lifestyles at the Albuquerque Jewish Community Center (JCC) summer camp, where they evaluated more than 200 children under the supervision of an instructor. They have also done screenings for students at St. Charles Catholic School, Dorin Charter School and AHEPA senior living apartments. Earlier this summer, the Nursing School had a booth at a Meals on Wheels fundraiser where the nursing students performed health assessments for people of all ages.

At the schools and JCC, the assessments were limited to hearing and eye checks and promotion of nutrition, exercise, hydration and safety. At AHEPA, the students also did blood pressure screens and talked to the residents about preventing falls.

“The nursing students seem to really enjoy this portion of their training,” said Karen Ball, clinical coordinator. “It gives them hands-on experience with people of all ages and helps with both the learning of skills and time management.”

During the upcoming school year, Ball expects the nursing students to do clinical rotations at public schools that do not have school nurses, as well as the JCC pre-school. If they find a health issue with a student, they report it to school administrators who will take it up with the parents. A total of 100 second-term nursing students will do the health assessments per term.

The school and elderly home visits are a small part of the students’ required clinical rotations. They spend a majority of their clinical rotations learning first-hand at hospitals and with other health care providers.

“This is a valuable program,” said Yulia Cole, nursing instructor. “It is a learning tool for our students and provides a free service to the community.”