NY-VT Nurses Unite, a group of area health professionals and students, will visit Honduras March 16-23. The group will provide medical care for the poor and under-served.
continued Dusti Pratt is making the trip with her daughter, Natasha.
Vermonters making the trip include Lianne Rush, RN; Phoebe Cole of Fletcher Allen Health Care; Karin Stafford, RN, a NCCC grad who works are FAHC; Janet Salotti Page of Rutland, a medical records technician at Genesis Health Care, Mountain View Center; Donna Jackson, RN, a nurse manager at Genesis Health Care, Mountain View Center; Sarah Neff, a social worker at Genesis Healthcare, Mountain View Center; Stephanie Mozzer, RN, and Ritza Arias Nunez, a student.
While in Honduras the group will work with local doctors. They plan to visit three villages and expect to see 800-900 patients.
“We see a lot of people in an eight-hour day,” Russell said. “We start by setting up a computer data base so future brigades can see what treatments patients have received. We then do triage before we provide care. Finally, each patient goes to a dental station for treatment.
“Usually the only time these people see a doctor or nurse is when a brigade comes to their village,” she added
Each patient will receive a physician consultation, teeth cleaning and a fluoride treatment as well as have access to pap smears, prostate exams and restorative dental care as necessary. Volunteers will have the opportunity to take patient vitals, obtain patient history and current symptoms, shadow and assist physicians and dentists, participate in preventative education, and fill prescriptions under a licensed pharmacist.
“You never know what you’ll find,” Russell said. “Last year we had a woman whose foot had been run over by a car. She walked miles to reach us and get treatment. It was fractured and we didn’t have any splints. We made a splint out of cardboard and duct tape. We call it MacGyver medicine.
“I love it,” she said of the experience. “I hope I can go every year. The people are so thankful. It’s hard to describe the feeling you get.”