NYCSHP organized their first international medical mission in collaboration with the Santram Mandir, an organization in Nadiad, Gujarat, India that deeply believes in “Janseva” or volunteer work. On February 24th 2017, a team of 5 pharmacists, four students, and a medical student embarked on a week long medical mission trip that highlighted the global impact pharmacists can make on improving access to patient care.
We set up clinics at the Santram Eye Hospital where blood pressure screenings, blood glucose testing, over-the counter medications and medication counseling were provided free of cost.
NYCSHP pharmacists and pharmacy students took the initiative to educate patients about hypertension management and diabetes education on a 1:1 basis (pharmacist/pharmacy student to patient). This allowed us to understand the patients past medical history, current medication therapy, and lifestyle factors in order to accurately counsel patients based on their individual needs.
We provided patient counseling on how to implement lifestyle changes, including exercising regularly and eating a healthier diet. In total, our team served approximately 300 patients over the span of 5 days.
On the first day of our mission, we had the opportunity to attend clinical rounds and shadow physicians at one of three major organization-affiliated hospitals. On days 2-5, we set up our primary care clinics to start seeing patients from the community. We entered the clinic every morning with patients waiting outside of our rooms!
Our experiences in India taught us much about the global impact pharmacists can make in providing care to patients abroad. We gained a unique perspective on the barriers, challenges, and difficulties in implementing patient care services in an unfamiliar setting with limited resources.
We were very grateful for the opportunity to volunteer on the very first NYCSHP medical mission trip. This was truly an enriching experience, and reaffirms our commitment to providing outstanding patient care as pharmacists.
Rima Jani, Pharm.D. Candidate 2017, Touro College of Pharmacy
Tu-Anh Tran, Pharm.D. Candidate 2017, Touro College of Pharmacy
Phoebe Wong, Pharm.D. Candidate 2017, Touro College of Pharmacy
Jason Babby, Pharm.D.
Niki Patel, Pharm.D.
Harshal P. Shukla, Pharm.D.
Posted by: Johnny J. Hon