Tamara Kear, RN, PhD, CNN, assistant professor at the Villanova (Pa.) University College of Nursing, was the recipient of the 2013 Research Abstract Award from the American Nephrology Nurses Association. It was presented April 23 in Las Vegas at the associations 44th National Symposium for her presentation “Hypertension in Haitian Migrant Communities in the Dominican Republic: An Investigation of Rural Bateyes.”
According to a news release, Kear has made several trips to Haiti with nursing students who monitor blood pressures of hundreds of adults and discuss risk factors, management and medications. She is focusing her research on the Haitian migrant workers and families who live in bateyes, the shanty towns next to the sugar cane fields in the Dominican Republic, the release said.
“They are the ones who fall through the cracks of the healthcare system,” Kear said in the release. “They are not considered Dominican citizens — even children born in the Dominican Republic of Haitian parents are not Dominican. Neither Haiti nor the Dominican Republic recognizes citizenship of these children, who have no country to call their home.”
According to the release, Kears study has been used to make revisions to the health assessment tool used by teams who provide healthcare in the bateyes. She and her students also have been invited to present a workshop to a group of 200 Haitian women attending an annual womens retreat in Santo Domingo in the Dominica Republic in October 2013. This workshop will focus on blood pressure screening, health promotion and hypertension risk reduction measures. It also will include a low-sodium cooking class and taste testing for the women. Kear said in the release that she has been using the data from her study to prepare for the workshop and has been working closely with Dominican and Haitian organizers for the retreat so that it meets the cultural and socioeconomic needs of the population.