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UC Davis Medicine - Logo
The institution's principal publication for alumni, friends and physicians.
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  ALUMNI
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OUR STUDENT-RUN CLINICS: SHIFA CLINIC

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"I came to UC Davis primarily because the student-run clinics offer an unparalleled, hands-on opportunity to serve the community while training to become a better, more culturally competent physician," says Pegah Pajouhi, a second-year medical student and co-director of the Shifa Community Clinic. As one of the five student-run clinics affiliated with the UC Davis School of Medicine, Shifa Community Clinic is a nonprofit medical facility dedicated to serving the diverse, medically uninsured population of the greater Sacramento area. Every Sunday, the clinic provides basic, as well as specialized, medical services free-of-charge to patients of many ethnicities and backgrounds. The majority of patients seen at Shifa, however, are non-English-speaking Muslims, and in order to accommodate the needs of these patients, Shifa ensures that its volunteers understand and respect the beliefs of its patients and provide translation services in Urdu, Hindi, Punjabi, Arabic, and Farsi. Staffed by undergraduate volunteers, first- and second-year medical students, and volunteer physicians from the UC Davis community, Shifa Clinic additionally serves as a center for teaching and learning, playing an active role in shaping the physicians of the future.

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With over 1,300 patients on file and an additional 300 new patients expected in 2005, Shifa's annual operating budget is valued at nearly $100,000, supported almost entirely by donations from the Sacramento community. Special projects at Shifa Clinic include a monthly Women's Health Clinic, providing free gynecological cancer screening, contraception counseling, STD screening and treatment, and clinical breast exams; a bi-annual Diabetic Retinopathy Screening staffed by the UC davis Medical Center Department of Ophthalmology to provide specialized eye exams for Shifa's large diabetic patient population; and extensive community outreach programs to help educate patients about the importance of preventative health care.

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The positive influence of these efforts is evident, not only among the target patient population, but also among the volunteers at the student-run clinics. According to Shahed Ghoghawala, another second-year medical student and co-director of Shifa Clinic, "You work with doctors who are the kind of doctors that I want to be, who are willing to come in and volunteer on weekends, and who are committed to helping underserved populations."

For more information about how to support the student-run clinics at UC Davis, please contact Calvin Kuo at cckuo@ucdavis.edu.

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UC DAVIS SCHOOL OF MEDICINE
PUBLIC AFFAIRS
4900 Broadway, Suite #1200
Sacramento, CA 95820

ucdavismedicine@ucdmc.ucdavis.edu

© 2005 UC Regents. All rights reserved.

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