Blog post by: Danielle
Additional pictures and posting by: Emily Flores, PharmD
Blog post by: Danielle
Additional pictures and posting by: Emily Flores, PharmD
We came on Sunday afternoon to set up our clinic. As the pharmacy team our main task was setting up the pharmacy and getting common medications pre-packed for week. We got the pharmacy set up in record time. The entire team helped pre-pack the drugs we thought would be used the most. Watching our team come together towards a common goal on set up day was awesome. We have an amazing team.
After set-up and pre-packing we spent some time back at the guest house preparing … even to do balloon animals!
Day 1 of clinic: Monday was our first day at the clinic. We had a subset of our team go to La Linea, our offsite clinic. Danielle accompanied the team to La Linea. Hannah, Sarah Beth and Addie were at the main clinic in La Verbena. Hannah was our floater, she mostly helped in dental. Sarah Beth was paired with a provider, our team leader, Trish. Addie was in the pharmacy with Dr. Flores. We saw a lot of children on our first day, we had to do a lot of dosing for the children, and the kids absolutely loved when we gave them stickers before they left.
Our team had many opportunities to see unique patients and pray for them and pray for their families and healing. Overall, it was a great first day and we’re looking forward to the rest of the week!
Blog post by: Addie
Additional pictures and posting by: Emily Flores, PharmD
Our group from Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy (the Pharm5) arrived at McGee Tyson Airport in Knoxville, TN Saturday Morning May 18 to set off on our adventure to Guatemala! Our first flight was a short flight to the Atlanta, GA airport and Danielle on our team had never flown before. The excitement in her eyes when she got to sit next to the window seat and see the world from a different angle was really touching. It made me think about how much we need to see the world from a different angle this week as well and be excited to bring hope into patients lives in a unique way. I pray God will allow us to have a different perspective on life this week and allow us to see people the way He sees them.
Once we arrived at the Atlanta airport, we decided to walk around the airport a little and explore while we waited several hours for our next flight. After walking around for a while, we met 4 different people with GHO shirts on who had just arrived to the airport. None of them new each other or us, and they were all from different areas of the country and had different roles, but yet we all began to talk and get to know each other and the pieces of a medical mission team began to come together. One of the students in the team even remarked that this was probably the most interprofessional thing he had ever done, and I thought how awesome to see a healthcare team come together so seamlessly by God’s hand to fulfill His purpose.
Our flight to Guatemala from Atlanta got delayed, so we arrived in Guatemala late, but from the pick up at the airport to the food and nice warm bed waiting for us at the guest house, I was amazed at the hospitality of our in country partner. The incredible hospitality made me realize just how selfish we can sometimes be. I know this week will be a great opportunity to reflect on my own selfishness and remove anything that will hinder me from serving others with my whole heart.
Sunday morning we attended a church service in Guatemala. The church was very large and hundreds of people came to the service. The service and music was all in Spanish, but the church was kind enough to provide us all with headsets to listen to the service in English. The most impactful moment of the service for me was listening to all the Guatemalan people raise their voices together to praise the Lord in Spanish. It made me realize how much God is doing around the world and how gathering together with fellow believers is not something that is just important in the US, but is important in all countries to strengthen our walk with the Lord.
We will let you know more as we go!
Blog post by: Sarah Beth
Uploaded by: Emily Flores
We are departing soon for Guatemala with an interprofessional team from Global Health Outreach (GHO). We are working hard this week to prepare personally as well as professionally. There is a lot to be done to prepare for a short-term medical team’s pharmacy needs, but we can do it! Last week we visited the headquarters of the Christian Medical and Dental Association in Bristol, Tennessee where Global Health Outreach is based. We were able to help with a few projects while we were there!
We look forward to sharing our journey to Guatemala with you. In the meantime, meet our pharmacy team …
Addison, PharmD Candidate 2020
I am from Sevierville, Tennessee and grew up in the shadow of the Great Smoky Mountains. I love hiking and kayaking with my husband and spending time at home with our two cats. I have been a student at East Tennessee State University since 2011, when I started my undergraduate degree. In 2015, I started my journey with the Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy. During my time at the College of Pharmacy, I have done various research projects and enjoyed several electives specific to my long-term goals in pharmacy, which have helped prepare me for this trip. I first heard of the Global Health Outreach Rotation my second year of pharmacy school when I attended the post-trip presentation of the fourth years who went that year. I knew God had placed it on my heart to go on this trip. I hope to gain the skills to work in the mission field and work with an interprofessional team. I am looking forward to developing relationships with the team members going with us from across the country.
Favorite Quotes: We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths – Walt Disney
Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from their neck saying, “Make me feel important.” Never forget this message when working with people – Mary Kay Ash
Favorite Verses: 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Danielle, PharmD Candidate 2020
I grew up in the small town of Kingston, TN, which is located about 30 minutes west of Knoxville. After graduating from Roane County High School in 2012, I moved to Johnson City, TN to attend East Tennessee State University where I earned my bachelor degree in chemistry. My love for ETSU resulted in me staying another 4 years to pursue my PharmD. As of now, my career interests include infectious diseases, ambulatory care, and internal medicine. Since I seem to like a little bit of everything, I am hoping my APPE rotations will help me decide which career path to take. I chose the GHO trip as one of my rotations due to my desire to attend a medical mission trip. I am so excited about this trip because it will be so many firsts for me! This will be my first mission trip of any kind, my first time to Central America, and my first time on a plane. Outside of school, I enjoy girls’ night, spending time with my family, being outside, watching Netflix and SEC football, and traveling.
Favorite Quotes: Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them. –Dalai Lama
Always pray to have eyes that see the best in people, a heart that forgives the worst, a mind that forgets the bad, and a soul that never loses faith in God. –Unknown
Favorites Verses: Jeremiah 29:11; Isaiah 40:31
Hannah, PharmD Candidate 2020
I grew up in Tazewell, Tennessee, a small town on the border of Tennessee, Kentucky, and Virginia. I attended Lincoln Memorial University for my undergraduate education where I received my BS in Chemistry. I then moved to Johnson City to start pharmacy school at ETSU’s Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy, where I am currently in my fourth and final year of the program. I plan to pursue residency training after graduating with my PharmD. While at Gatton, I have had numerous meaningful experiences including participation in organizations such as the American Pharmacists Association – Academy of Student Pharmacists, Student Society of Health-System Pharmacy, and Christian Pharmacists Fellowship International. I have enjoyed serving in roles such as chair of the Student Life and Wellness Committee and as a Student Ambassador for the college. My experiences have helped shape my time as a student pharmacist thus far and have allowed me to develop a passion for serving others. I chose to participate in a global health rotation because I wanted to make a difference while challenging myself to grow both personally and professionally during my last year of pharmacy school. Coming from a small rural town, I have a heart for serving the underserved and am excited to travel to Guatemala to provide care to those with limited access to healthcare resources. I look forward to the opportunity to learn, grow, and serve alongside other members of the healthcare team!
Favorite Quotes: Let all that you do be done in love. – I Corinthians 16:14
Be fearless in pursuit of what sets your soul on fire. – Jennifer Lee
Sarah Beth, B.S., PharmD Candidate 2020
I grew up in the North Carolina mountains, but moved to Tennessee when I was twelve. I enjoy hiking, singing, writing, and research. I earned my Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from East Tennessee State University in 2015 and began pharmacy school at Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy in 2016. I wanted to earn my PharmD because I have always loved science, especially chemistry, and was very fascinated by how the drugs worked in the human body. I also wanted to be able to use my skills and passion to make a difference in other people’s lives. My dad traveled to different countries on mission trips with our church when I was young, and he would bring me back items from the different countries and tell me about how the group spent their time helping the people and sharing the Gospel. I was so fascinated with his trips and his heart to share the Good News with others that a passion began to grow in me. I was also good friends with a young American girl whose family sold everything they had to move to Bangladesh and then Thailand to share the Gospel. I remember going to a yard sale at our church when I was young and buying several of my friend’s dolls because she couldn’t take all of them with her to Bangladesh. As a young child, I was moved by the bravery and heart my friend had. She and I kept up for several years with each other through hand-written pen-pal letters. I was also able to take a mission trip to Anniston, Alabama a few years ago after tornadoes completely destroyed most of the area. We worked to help rebuild homes and minister to those suffering and it was such and incredible experience to see God’s hand at work that week. From a young age, I have always been a firm believer in the Great Commission, and I am so excited to have the opportunity to use my newly developed skills to reach my area and the world with the Gospel of Christ.
Favorite Quotes: I am crucified with Christ, but yet I live -Galatians 2:20
““What if I fall?” Oh, but my darling, what if you fly?”- Erin Hanson
Bio text by: Individual pharmacy students
Blog post by: Emily Flores, PharmD
Greetings everyone! As has become the custom, I pause in April to update on the Global and Rural Engagement happenings at the East Tennessee State University (ETSU) Bill Gatton College of Pharmacy. (GCOP) Thank you for being a part of our journey!
Gatton College of Pharmacy Mission: To develop progressive, team-oriented pharmacists that improve healthcare, focusing on rural and underserved communities
This past year has been another year of growth and a year of a lot of planning as we continue to strive for excellence in achieving our mission with a light on the focus on rural and underserved communities.
In June 2018 our first GCOP students (Mia, Katrice, and Santon)traveled with Dr. Susie Crowe to Mbarara, Uganda. The student/faculty team from ETSU worked with students and faculty from Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) and Mbarara Regional Referral Hospital (MRRH) to care for patients in the wards at MRRH while learning alongside each other at the start of the summer break. As a part of the trip the month started off with Dr. Crowe and the GCOP students assisting with a therapeutic review for clinical patient care.
In September 2018 our second GCOP students (Audrey, Bo, Cara, Justin) traveled with Dr. Emily Flores to Mbarara, Uganda. This team worked with students and faculty at MUST and MRRH during the Fall semester; assisting with some classroom sessions, rounding together, and participating in interprofessional patient simulation with medical students. The team also worked with local faculty to explore the feasibility of increased intentionality in community pharmacy educational placements.
Both initial placements were excellent experiences for ETSU faculty and students and we have continued to enjoy communication with our friends and colleagues at MUST throughout the year. The ETSU/MUST partnership is amazing in opportunities and collegiality as pharmacy and interprofessional care in Uganda is really growing at this point in history. The formal Memorandum of Understanding for ETSU and MUST future work and collaborations is in the process of signature routing and we hope to have it in place very soon. Dr. Susie Crowe will be returning to Mbarara in just a few short weeks with three ETSU final year pharmacy students (Alexis, Rachel, and Stacie) and Dr. Emily Flores will return in September with three ETSU final year pharmacy students (Chelsie, Christie, and Maddie) as well.
In November 2018 our ninth team of students traveled with Dr. Emily Flores and an interprofessional team from Global Health Outreach (GHO). The four ETSU final year pharmacy students (Chrissy, Kennedy, Jordan, and Stephanie) participated in caring for patients in Ecuador as a part of one main and alternating mobile clinics. It was a great experience for the students in interprofessional work, pharmacy growth, and personal development. The students were an integral part of the overall care team!
The ETSU and GHO partnership continues to thrive. Dr. Emily Flores will next be traveling with Dr. Trish Burgess (team leader and GHO Director) to Guatemala in May 2019 with four ETSU final year pharmacy students (Addie, Danielle, Hannah, and Sarah Beth).
Additionally, four GCOP students that are earlier in their training (between 2nd and 3rd years) will travel this summer with Central Baptist church to Guatemala in June. These students will receive introductory pharmacy practice experience credit for this trip which includes an interprofessional team with both ETSU and community participation. This is the third year for ETSU pharmacy students to engage in this opportunity.
Global health didactic education is on track, with excellent interprofessional participation in the Fall 2019 Global Healthcare: Disease Treatment and Prevention online course and sign-ups currently going on for Fall 2019. In Spring 2019, Global Healthcare: Perspectives and Practice, the interprofessional blended/ground course was not offered due to interprofessional faculty job changes but it is slated to be offered in Spring 2020 and may also be open to undergraduate students at that time. The interprofessional global health certificate that is offered through the College of Public Health is now being offered and has a handful of interprofessional students enrolled. We presented a poster on this in Fall 2018.
Global health research is growing as Dr. Crowe and I hope to collaborate on at least one paper in the coming year and she continues to publish through her global relationships. More to come!
Global health service this year includes Dr. Crowe as the current chair-elect of the American College of Clinical Pharmacy Global Health Practice & Research Network and Dr. Flores is serving as a committee member.
Collaboration is key in global health and ETSU is buzzing about this. We have an exciting session next week to explore future options!
Many of our graduating final year students completed Advanced Pharmacy Practice Rotations in rural and/or medically underserved areas this year. The Health Wagon continues to offer an excellent experience, as does the Rogersville Medical Complex (Rural Health Services Consortium site), along with several Indian Health Service locations, and a variety of other locations. In Summer 2019 we will have our second set of final year ETSU pharmacy students (Payton and Stephanie) complete the Appalachian Preceptorship in partnership with the ETSU Quillen College of Medicine and the Rogersville Medical Complex. We are excited to hear about their experiences!
For the second year our students engaged with other ETSU interprofessional students at the Remote Area Medical (RAM) mobile clinic in Gray, Tennessee in November 2018 as a part of interprofessional student teams. These teams provided over 1,000 interventions and individual students commented on learning about the professions of others as well as about the needs of rural and underserved patients. Student researchers presented data collected on student team impact over the past two years in Spring 2019 at the Appalachian Student Research Forum. Now it is time to start planning and recruiting for the Fall 2019 interprofessional student teams!
In addition to the above poster, a poster on rural practice-based research conducted at the Rogersville Medical Complex this year was also presented at the Appalachian Student Research Forum. Over this academic year, five students (Jonathan, Rebecca, Justi, Sean, and Addie) completed eight research electives focusing in the area of rural practice-based research with Dr. Flores. Several students are slated to complete rural practice-based research with Dr. Flores in Fall 2019.
This year, the College appointed a Rural Health Initiative Working Group, chaired by Dr. Flores to work on the implementation of rural introductory pharmacy practice experience (IPPE) hours for all didactic students starting in Fall 2019 as well as to develop a Rural Health Initiative Strategic Plan. This has been an exciting process!
Rural IPPE hours will be patient care experiences and will encompass some activities that our students have already been doing (i.e., Naloxone rescue training at multiple area RAMs, medication counseling at the Church Hill Free Clinic, Drug Take Back day events, interprofessional teams at the Gray, TN RAM event, immunization clinics in rural settings) while also developing some new partnerships. Generation Rx continues to be rewarded nationally and provide numerous Naloxone rescue training programs in our region! One of the new partnerships is with Providence Clinic in Kingsport. Providence Clinic serves the uninsured in the surrounding areas. Chelsie (3rd year) and Chuk (1st year) joined Dr. Flores recently at this site for a Diabetes Group Education Class and then to help with logging and stocking some medications in their drug closet. We are excited about starting the rural IPPE hours in the coming semester!
The Rural Health Initiative Working Group has been diligently gathering and processing information over the past year to propose a related strategic plan that both captures all of the wonderful activities that our College and graduates have done and continue to do while also planning for intentional growth in this area.
Strategic Plan Purpose: To guide the College in preparing all graduates for entry-level practice caring for rural and underserved patients, interested learners for advanced specialty practice in rural and underserved communities, capitalizing on strategic partnerships to impact health disparities in our region, and describing the impact of the College and it’s graduates on rural and underserved communities.
Values: Patient-centered, Community-guided, Capacity-building, Interprofessional, Sustainable
You will hear more about these initiatives in coming months and years.
On April 24, 2019 East Tennessee State University’s Academic Health Sciences Center unveiled a formal transition of all of its affiliated Colleges, clinics, education, and research endeavors to become ETSU Health. This is a strong move in excellence for our University health’s offerings as we all come together with a stronger and more clear vision and mission for the health of our region.
In summary, it has been a great year and we are looking forward to continued growth! Thank you and please continue to follow along! We are excited about what is to come in Global and Rural Engagement at ETSU and the Gatton College of Pharmacy!
Blog post by: Emily Flores, PharmD, BCPS
Volunteering at Church Hill Free Medical Clinic is more than just service hours to me, it is a factor into why I choose a career in pharmacy. Church Hill Free Medical Clinic is a part of the Of One Accord Ministry which is an Appalachian ministry that serves some of the lowest income families from Hawkins and Hancock county. The clinic started with nothing but a yearning to help uninsured residents. The community sometimes donates medicine and medical supplies for the clinic to use. Overtime, the clinic has became what it is today which is a place of security for residents that are uninsured and struggle with financial needs. For years I worked at our local community pharmacy which has close ties with the clinic. I originally was a patient at the Free Clinic because I didn’t have insurance, went to school, and worked part time to pay bills but was in need of medical care. This is one of the reasons I love the clinic because they truly do help people in need and that are in a rough spot without asking for much in return but a $5 office visit fee if the patient has that. With the Clinic needing help in the pharmacy and my experience as a pharmacy tech, I started to volunteer there. I grew relationships with not only the staff but the regulars that came for care at the clinic. Once I was accepted into pharmacy school, I didn’t have time to volunteer but still kept in touch with some of the staff there. Recently, I had the opportunity to be able to volunteer a night at the clinic for school and took a moment to just be thankful. I am so proud of how far the clinic has came. There is someone steady now in the pharmacy, Michelle, which is a blessing to have. I’m so glad I was able to go back to see the progress the clinic has made and help out for a night. I have attached several pictures to show what the clinic does, Michelle, Dr. Schilling who is one of the main doctors at the clinic, and my experience.
Blog post by: Christian
A few of us stayed behind in Ecuador to go to the Galapagos!
When the airplane landed on the first island, we were very surprised by the terrain. It was almost as if we had just landed in the middle of a desert! This was not what we expected! We took a boat to a different island and then a bus ride to the hotel and the terrain changed dramatically and everything was suddenly green and lush!
We spent the first day on a tour bus exploring the natural geography, including a collapsed crater (Los Gemelos) – formed from gas leaving the volcanic area and causing a canyon. We spent the rest of the day at a tortoise sanctuary (Rancho Primicias), which is home for the giant tortoises native to Santa Cruz island.
On the second day, we spent the morning snorkeling in the water. We saw many tropical fish, sea turtles, and sea urchins. We also visited a shark channel and an iguana beach. There are multiple species of iguana endemic to the island and adapted specifically for the conditions unique to each island.
Lastly, we had a long two-day journey home – but luckily we were able to make it home for Thanksgiving to enjoy the company of our families!
Blog post by: Steph
Friday we finished packing up the pharmacy! It feels like as quickly as we came we left; but not without doing all we could with the help of the Lord. It was amazing to be part of a team where everyone was so willing to help out. We had logistic people helping in any way asked and even providers doing their best to count hundreds of tablets.
After packing up, we immediately got on the bus and headed back to Guayaquil. We were able to walk along the water at the boardwalk, and grab some food after picking up some souvenirs. After a long week, we were able to get to bed early for a full fun-filled day in Guayaquil on Saturday.
We began the day with a brisk walk up to the lighthouse that included 444 stairs. From there, we stopped at a local market for more shopping. People were shouting, it was hot, and there was no room to move without knocking something over, but it was definitely an experience. For dinner, the whole team was able to gather together to eat a wonderful meal of steaks, grilled chicken, and pork sausages. Emily, Kennedy, and Jordan then headed to the airport and got ready to go home.
Stephanie and Chrissy will be continuing the adventure and will be updating from the Galápagos Islands. Stay tuned!
Blog post by: Jordan and Kennedy
Today was a busy last day for us in clinic. Stephanie and Kennedy went into the mountains for another off-site clinic, while Jordan and Chrissy worked in the pharmacy, triaged patients, and spent some fun times with the kids.
S*****, an elderly local, came back to sing for us again and keep us company throughout the day in triage. I***** enjoyed getting some pictures with everyone while trying to sell his naranjas (oranges).
Once again we all worked together as a team to complete our day prior to enjoying an evening with the mayor of Pasaje. He invited us to a banana plantation, provided us dinner, and gave gifts.
We finally completed our evening with gifts for our wonderful translators, without them none of the services we provided would have been possible!
The day started off with a good breakfast at the hotel. Chrissy and I went to the off site clinic where we worked in the pharmacy and patient intake. I came across a patient during intake, and she shared that she had been in a lot of pain. Thankfully she had faith in the Lord that he would heal her, and she was brought to us for help. At the off site clinic, we were able to see over 50 patients and make a difference in many of their lives.
Working at the off-site clinic we were very grateful for the opportunity to practice independently alongside the wonderful translators and providers. Being very close to graduation this gave us a vote of confidence for the rest of the rotation and our final months.
Back at the main site, Kennedy and Stephaine helped by also working in patient intake and the pharmacy while filling any need that the team had. The mosquitos came in numbers today due to the rain last night, but they were unsuccessful in their attempt to run the ladies away.
We were invited to a celebration in Pasaje for those newly accepting of the Lord. There was fantastic music and beautiful dancing by the locals. It was a great experience that we were so thankful to share with them. God has done some incredible work this week!!
Blog post by: Jordan