It has been a while since I’ve written! I hope you guys all enjoyed your winter break and are finishing up with those college applications. Now all you have to do is enjoy the second semester of senior year, which I must add was one of the best times of high school. You can sit back, relax, wait for colleges to get back to you and enjoy your time with family and friends.
So what have I been up to? I’ve had one of my best winter breaks ever with my trip to HONDURAS!! I’ve never gotten so close to people in just one week and I definitely never have felt like becoming a doctor as bad as I did after that trip. Here are my favorite highlights from my trip !
I went with Global Medical Brigades, a national organization that supports many kinds of brigades. For example, they host Water Brigade, Public Health Brigades, Architecture Brigade, Finance Brigades, etc. I applied for the Medical Brigade way back in March 2011, and was accepted along with about 20 other students. Most of these students are pre-health majors who plan to pursue a career in medicine, dentistry or pharmacy. We all worked very hard all of Fall 2011 on recruiting doctors to join our brigade, collecting medicines and donations (clothes, toys). The purpose of our brigade is simply to take 4-5 doctors, pack tons of medications and doctors, travel to Honduras, city of Santa Cruz and set up 5-6 stations in a local school for 1 week. The 5 stations included:
Here we ask them about their family history, current medications, we measure their blood pressure, temperature, height, etc. The hardest part of this station is to converse with them in Spanish. As I had no experience with the Spanish language, I needed a translator to help in this process. Here I am measuring blood pressure of one of my patients and another one me working with a translator (Tanya Shah) to note down the family’s medical history!
2) Doctor’s station
There were 4 doctors on our brigade with us. Most of them were parents of some of the brigaders. Each doctor had 2 student assistants , one to translate and one to enter the information collected in a database. We also got to help take blood sugar levels, dress wounds as well as observe the doctor as they diagnosed/prescribed medicines. This was my favorite station by far!
I also had a huge obsession with all the kids that came through. They were so sweet and cute 🙂 I think pediatrics is my calling!
Kaleena (translator), I am doing database and Dr.Rogers is well being the doctor.
One of the many kids that I took pictures with.
A patient that came in with a huge burn on her foot. Basically, a huge section of her foot was peeled away. I am applying this special cream and then bandaging the whole thing.
Cute little kid that came through!
Many of the patients came through had teeth conditions that were beyond repairable. It was unfortunate to see that many of them had no choice but to have their tooth extracted. Some had the fortunate chance to get fillings!
We even had a OBGYN section but I did not have time to work there because more help was needed in the other stations. 🙁
We educated the kids and families on hygiene and the important role it plays in their well being. We taught a group of students how to brush their teeth
This is the last station that the patients go through and pick up their medications. All these medications were bought in the United States. We packed them in bags for each patient so that it lasts tehm 3-4 months (until the next time a brigade comes around).
Packing each prescription into baskets. This them went to the main pharmacist we had on our brigade. She checked whether the prescriptions were correct and handed it out to patients.
The loads of medical supplies we brought with us.
Packing the medicines into little bags so we could distribute it to patients.
We worked for 3 days of the 5 days we were on the brigade. Here are the statistics of our brigade:
Other than putting on medical brigades, we visited an orphanage and played with the children.
One of orphan’s rooms. They love Justin Bieber and Taylor Swift.
We also painted a school which was super fun!
Last but not least, I made some of my closest friends. 🙂
I have finally adjusted back to school and gotten back into study mode. But, I miss HONDRUAS so much. Definitely returning back next winter <3