La Mesa Briefs – December 26, 2014 – January 22, 2015

Grossmont College and Point Loma Nazarene University partner on four-year nursing degree

Starting in fall 2015, graduates of Grossmont College’s nursing program will be able to continue their education on the community college campus and receive their bachelor of science in nursing degree from Point Loma Nazarene University (PLNU). The two educational institutions announced their partnership in December to address workforce demands and the increased demand for nurses with bachelor’s degrees.

The program will take students 15 months to complete and cost $16,200, which includes the cost of books. A press release by both schools stated that Grossmont’s nursing students will “benefit from the instruction and student support resources from the university.” A fulltime PLNU advisor will be at Grossmont to assist with enrollment and provide scholarship information. PLNU’s nursing program recently celebrated its 40th anniversary and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and licensed by the California Board of Registered Nursing. For more information visit

Public health officials warn against West Nile virus

County officials have found four dead birds recently that tested positive for West Nile virus bringing the total number to 41 in 2014, the most since 38 dead birds tested positive in 2009. In a news release, director of County Environmental Health Department Elizabeth Pozzebon stated that mosquitoes are most active at dusk and dawn and that people out at those times should wear long-sleeves and use insect repellent.

Residents should also clear their yards of standing water to keep mosquitoes from breeding. The recent rain and climbing temperatures are optimal for mosquito breeding. Eleven county residents have been diagnosed with West Nile virus in 2014 including a 78-year-old La Mesa man who died from the disease. From 2010 – 2013 only two people were diagnosed in the county. To report a dead bird or green swimming pool to the Vector Control Program call 858-694-2888 or email For more information on West Nile virus visit

Sharp Grossmont Hospital receives award for stroke care

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association bestowed its highest honor for stroke care — the “Get with the Guidelines” Stroke Gold-Plus Award — to Sharp Grossmont Hospital. The award was earned by the hospital by demonstrating at least 85 percent compliance in specific quality achievement measures for 24 or more consecutive months.

The hospital almost made the American Heart Association Target Stroke Honor Roll for reducing time to less than 60 minutes between hospital arrival and tissue plasminogen activator treatment (tPA) for 50 percent or more of stroke patients. tPA is a medication sometimes given to patients within three hours of a stroke to dissolve blood clots in the brain. People who receive the drug within three hours of the onset of stroke symptoms are less likely to suffer severe disability.

Sharp Grossmont Hospital treats more than 800 patients with stroke and transient ischemic attack each year. For more on their Stroke Center visit

Pageant organizers seek contestants for Miss La Mesa

The city of La Mesa will host its annual Miss La Mesa Pageant on March 6, 2015. Organizers are currently seeking residents ages 13 – 26 to participate in the pageant sponsored by the La Mesa Chamber of Commerce.

The program has been a tradition since the 1960s, focusing on community service, networking, public speaking and interview skills. Contestants will be scored on personal interview, speech, poise and personality, evening gown, and on-stage impromptu question. Photographers at the pageant will present the Miss Photogenic award, contestants will vote for Miss Congeniality and a local educator will award a winner in the essay-writing contest.

Winners will serve as ambassadors to the city attending grand openings, parades and other events throughout the year. The 2015 titleholders will receive a scholarship of $500 or more and a prize package.

For more information and to download an entry packet from and entries will be accepted until Feb. 8, 2015.

Assemblymember Weber introduces body camera bill

Assemblymember Shirley N. Weber, who represents La Mesa and other parts of San Diego in the California Assembly, recently introduced a bill aimed at “developing policies based on best practices” for the use of body-worn cameras by law enforcement personnel. The bill, AB 66, would create a task force to study the effectiveness of body-worn cameras and take input from experts and communities already implementing body camera programs. The task force would make policy recommendations to the Legislature based on information gathered.

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