On November 23, 2010, we had the pleasure of instituting a flu shot clinic at the YWCA of Nashville for our Vulnerable and Underserved Populations course. This particular course focused on how we as healthcare professionals can extend a helping hand to those in our community who do not always have adequate access to healthcare. The mission of the YWCA of Nashville parallels that of Lipscomb University in that it provides services that empower and uplift individuals who have survived domestic violence.
Women of domestic abuse are survivors of one our nation’s most horrific crimes-theft of power and control. When these women eradicate themselves from such an unhealthy environment, they are oftentimes “on the run” from their abusers. As a result, they may not have proper access to adequate healthcare. In years past, the YWCA partnered with a health service that provided flu shots to the residents of their shelter, but unfortunately due to budget cuts, the service could no longer provide flu shots to the residents and staff. As a result, many residents became ill with the influenza virus. With the lack of a healthcare resource to provide flu vaccinations, the YWCA had a great need for flu vaccines this season. Therefore, we decided to partner with them to fulfill this need and to provide protection against all three strains of the influenza virus.
On the day of the clinic, we arrived at an undisclosed location that houses approximately 47 women and children. We vaccinated many of the staff and residents under Dr. Nola’s supervision. This experience provided a vast number of learning opportunities due to the fact that we were able to apply concepts presented in the classroom in a real world setting. The primary goal of this project was to establish a healthcare service that would be sustainable in future years for student pharmacists who elect to take this course. It is our sincere hope that this project accomplished that goal and will benefit the women of the YWCA for years to come.
By Aya Fukuda and Kennita Ferguson, Class of 2012