Signal Hill, CA – Nursing students and faculty from American University of Health Sciences (AUHS) School of Pharmacy will be offering free health screenings and prescription checks to men, women and families who are in need on Saturday, September 8, from 9:45 a.m. to Noon, at A Church of Love, 2094 Cherry Avenue, Signal Hill, 90755. Called WISH/MASH (Women Inspiring Self Health/Men Achieving Self Health), the event provides the public with access to healthcare students and professionals who will evaluate health issues and needs, review medical histories, check for contra-indications with regard to prescription drugs, and discuss financial and spiritual needs. The event is free and open to the public. AUHS provides food at the end of the event along with a small stipend for transportation.
Faculty, students, and Pastor Johnson will be available for interviews along with some participants.
AUHS has been partnering with A Church of Love to provide these free health screenings to the community since 2010. Pastor Gregory Johnson, head of “A Church of Love” and Co-Founder of AUHS as well as Vice Chairman of AUHS’ Board of Trustee’s, felt there was a need to help those in trouble. “Times are very hard for so many families, as well as those who are currently living out on the streets. I believe in helping those who have no options and giving back to my community. So we created these events where people who have been left out of the system, forced out, or dropped off the grid can come and get the medical attention they need.” Over 50% of WISH/MASH participants are homeless, the rest are low-income working families.
Held every quarter at A Church of Love, WISH/MASH has helped thousands of low income families and the homeless by providing glucose and blood pressure tests, ongoing consultation of medical needs, and spiritual guidance. “Most of the people we see have little or no health insurance,” Pastor Johnson explains. “We see high rates of diabetes and heart disease due to a lack of proper diets and insufficient access to medical attention. Also, so many are self-medicating or taking the incorrect dosage because they do not have regular access to a doctor.” Those who are diagnosed with immediate medical concerns are taken to local City and County facilities that can provide treatment and care.
For Johnson and the staff at AUHS, this is an ongoing service they provide to the community at large. They continually monitor all who participate in WISH/MASH making sure they are taking their medication and staying healthy. Knowing that these events occur regularly provides stability for these individuals in terms of their healthcare.
Pastor Johnson has been working with the homeless for over 10 years. Giving back to the community and helping those less fortunate has always been a top priority for him and Kim Dang, Co-Founder of AUHS. As a Christian-based, minority-serving university, the values of faith in God, love of humankind, and respect for all persons, irrespective of differences are embraced. “The vision and mission of AUHS is found in our faith in God and a strong, dedicated faculty and staff who work diligently to provide our students with outstanding educational opportunities. We believe in a continuum of education that begins when students enter the university and never ends,” states Dr. Dang-Johnson. “AUHS makes a commitment to our students that they will be intellectually prepared to serve their community as a health care professional who have the skills, ability, leadership, and empathy that will meet the changing demands of health care both here and abroad. I am proud to say that our students and alumni reflect the positive human values we believe are essential within the changing health care environment in order to make a significant contribution to society.”