The impetus for THEA’s Medical Education Program was when Cynthia Mudd witnessed the enormous needs and lack of medical and rehabilitation resources in Haiti following the January 2010 earthquake. Upon returning from working in a hospital in Haiti where patients from Port au Prince were being transported for further surgical care, Cynthia wanted to provide education opportunities for young women and men in Haiti to study medicine and rehabilitation at the university level. That way, consistent long-term medical care could be provided to those affected by the earthquake and others after the short-term volunteer teams leave.
On THEA’s January 2011 trip, we divided the secondary students and others into 3 groups depending on their interests: sewing, agriculture, or medical. The students who indicated wanting to learn more about medical professions shadowed the nurses, social worker, and occupational therapist on the team. They learned about blood pressure, nutrition, identifying and preventing the spread of infectious diseases, oral hygiene, and rehabilitative needs.
On the July 2011 trip, these medical track students learned about stroke rehabilitation, correction of oculomotor deficits, and participated in a vision clinic. The students were also given an assignment for the week. Each student was given a community health information packet which they were to study then present to their community at the end of the week. There were about 40 people in attendance. Topics included environmental hygiene, water purification, nutrition, children’s mental health, etc.
Community Health Education
- conducted health education sessions at a local church creatively teaching about the identification, prevention, and treatment of cholera, typhoid, and malaria.
- taught personal and oral hygiene at a local school. Each student was able to receive a bar of soap, toothbrush, and toothpaste.
- taught nurses and medical students at the local hospital CPR, IV medication, and prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs)- giving brochures in Creole about STDs.
- provided materials on diabetes in Creole to the local village doctor who wanted to start a diabetes awareness group in the community.
- conducted community training seminars on nutrition and it’s importance in preventing common illnesses and in child development.
- taught caretakers of children and adults with disabilities topics such as the treatment and prevention of scabies and other pervasive skin disorders, stroke and oculomotor rehabilitation, and more.
Consider joining us on our next trip and sharing your expertise.
Please donate to our Medical Education Fund.