Contact: Allison Benner, College Relations Associate – Media, 610-740-3790


African School Seeks to Raise Awareness of Nursing to Combat Serious Shortage

Allentown, PA (November 3, 2005) – On Friday, November 4th, four members of the Cedar Crest nursing faculty will embark on a two-week journey to lend their clinical expertise and advice to the Narh-Bita School of Nursing in Tema, Ghana. The school is one of only three nursing schools in the country and is the only private institution. Upon their arrival the instructors will meet the school's second matriculating class and present lectures, as well as tour hospital facilities and communities in Ghana with school staff members.

At the beginning of 2005, Dr. Richard Lartey, a doctor of emergency medicine at Lehigh Valley Hospital originally from Ghana, approached Cedar Crest College assistant professor of nursing Nancy DalPezzo with the opportunity. "We decided it was definitely something we should get involved with," says DalPezzo. "It gives our instructors a chance to share skills, and we as nurses and educators will be able to bring a global perspective of the profession back to our program at Cedar Crest."

Like many sub-Saharan African countries, Ghana is currently experiencing a serious shortage of nurses. According to the World Health Organization (WHO) there are approximately 64 nurses for every 100,000 people in Ghana compared to the United States' 939 nurses per 100,000 people.

"Our goal, and the Narh-Bita School's goal, is to advance nursing education and ultimately raise the profile of nursing in general in Ghana," says DalPezzo.

The trip will also serve to build the foundation of a continued correspondence with the Narh-Bita School. "We are exploring a number of future opportunities that a continued relationship with the Ghanaian school could bring for our nursing students as well as theirs."

Cedar Crest nursing faculty traveling to Ghana are Nancy DalPezzo of Wescosville, Amy Edgar of Coopersburg, Sandy Leh of Pottstown and Wendy Robb of Quakertown. All are assistant professors of nursing at Cedar Crest College.

Upon their return, the professors will be available for interview opportunities to share their experience and pictures from the trip.

For more information, please contact the College Relations Office at 610-740-3790.

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