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When Class Becomes Reality Ana Munoz 21

When Class Becomes Reality: Ana Munoz, '21


Morristown, N.J. (May 14, 2020) – Ana Munoz entered her second semester of graduate school at the Saint Elizabeth University in January of 2020. Enrolled in the College’s Master of Public Health program, Munoz began taking an epidemiology class.

Having more than 20 years of experience working as a Patient Navigator for those struggling with infectious diseases, such as HIV/AIDS, Munoz was already familiar with the topic. However, on their first day, the class began analyzing a virus that was ravaging residents of Wuhan, China. The sudden influx of patients requiring hospitalization was overwhelming their healthcare systems and challenging their government.

One moment, the class was discussing the theoretical implications of this novel coronavirus moving into the United States, the next they were living with its realities.

“All the material we were learning in the class came to be the experience of the world,” explains Munoz. “COVID-19 invaded our health, our families, our children, our friends, our communities, our daily routines, our jobs, our finances, our homes, our schools, and our hospitals.”

Currently, Munoz spends her days contacting patients and advising them on how to avoid infection. She establishes their health status, provides them with three months’ worth of medications and soothes their anxieties.

Unfortunately, some of Munoz’s long-term patients fighting HIV/AIDs have lost their lives due to COVID-19. However, she remains committed to helping the immunocompromised navigate this uncertain time.

“Our hospital family, our health care workers, must stand together from every department to help our patients overcome the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Munoz. “As a firm believer in prayers, I continue praying for this nation!”