Frontier Nursing University (FNU), located in Versailles, Ky., recently announced its annual award recipients. These awards are presented to FNU alumni who have gone on to make significant contributions to their communities or to the university. Among those honored was Dr. Rhoda Ojwang, DNP, APRN, FNP-C, of San Diego. Dr. Ojwang was awarded the Distinguished Service to Society Award. This award honors a graduate who goes above and beyond to provide exceptional service in their communities.
“We are very proud that so many of our alumni not only go on to play such important roles in their communities but also value the work that Frontier is doing and choose to give back to the university as instructors and leaders,” said FNU President Dr. Susan Stone, CNM, DNSc, FAAN, FACNM. “It is amazing how many deserving individuals are nominated for these annual awards, and we extend our gratitude and congratulations to all of this year’s winners.”
Dr. Ojwang is the president and founder of Healthcare Access International Group (HAIG), a non-profit organization in San Diego dedicated to making healthcare accessible worldwide. Dr. Ojwang earned her DNP from FNU in 2016.
The mission of HAIG is: “To make healthcare accessible among the underserved in Kenya, across Africa, and eventually globally.” HAIG strives to connect people with sustainable healthcare systems to help individuals manage their diseases and stay connected with their health care providers.
“I decided to start HAIG because I am originally from Kenya,” Ojwang said. “Growing up I was privileged to be brought up in a family where I went to the best schools and received top quality health care services when I was ill. Throughout my nursing career here in the United States, I constantly thought of ways to give back to my own people, particularly those who were not as privileged as I was. I had a burning desire to make healthcare accessible to those in need. Lack of access to healthcare and the increasing rate of poverty is a growing global public health problem. Although the same is true for developed nations, the developing nations are in dire need of basic healthcare.”
HAIG achieves its mission through medical mission trips to underserved areas. These missions are 100% dependent on donations. All financial donations received go towards the purchase of medications and supplies. An example of the impact of the mission trips is a five-day trip to Kenya. On that trip, over 900 patients were served through free health screenings for cervical and breast cancer, diabetes and hypertension, wound care, HIV testing and counseling, ENT and vision screenings.