A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about pharmacy

Tony's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013


This trip has really been an eye-opening experience for me. I haven't had many opportunities to travel like this, so seeing a new part of the world has been huge for me. The work I've done at the Hillside clinic has been some of the most rewarding I've done since I started in the field, and it really makes you realize what you take for granted at home. The cramped pharmacy at the clinic and their limited supply of medications and supplies forces you to push what you have to the absolute limit. It's clear that this area is in need of better quality health care, and I'm so glad to have been a part of their team.

Our work at the schools has been another great experience. Having the opportunity to go into the classrooms and spend some time with the students has given me a much greater understanding of the health resources they have. Many of the schools haven't been the nicest looking places, but everyone there loves it and they are all so thankful for what they have.

This trip has been a fantastic opportunity for me so far and I can't wait to see what the rest of it will bring.

Anthony Micallef
Pharmacy Technology Student
NSCC, Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 09:16 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia health pharmacy study_abroad service_learning Comments (0)

Bev's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013

Our week thus far in Belize has been incredible. We are fortunate to have a group of students who are truly embracing this experience and I am proud to be here with them representing NSCC. We have been divided into two groups, one to go to the schools to teach hand washing and oral hygiene and the other to observe at the Hillside Clinic. These groups will switch the second week we are here. I have spent the last four days with a group of five students at the clinic.

The Hillside Clinic is run by a group of volunteer health care providers such as physicians, pharmacists and nurses and serves as an educational opportunity for students in several health care disciplines. The clinic provides outpatient services to the villages around Punta Gorda. There are several mobile clinics where Hillside volunteers will travel to more rural areas. The NSCC students have participated in these mobile clinics, home visits and outreach programs for seniors in the community. Observing the NSCC students interact with clinicians and patients at the Hillside Clinic has been amazing. Hillside exemplifies interprofessional/interdisciplinary care where all health care providers work together, interacting and discussing patient care. Hillside has provided a wonderful and exciting learning experience.

The NSCC students have been professional every step of the way whether it involved cancelled flights, lost luggage or long van rides. They have adapted without complaint and moved forward with a positive attitude. They greet each new experience with anticipation, excitement and an open mind. Each night we share a dinner together where we discuss the highlights and challenges of the day, which we refer to as “apples and onions”. As a faculty I cannot express how appreciative I am to be here and share this experience with everyone.

Bev Stotz
Pharmacy Technology Faculty
NSCC, Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 10:06 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia pharmacy healthcare study_abroad service_learning Comments (0)

Kristin's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013

It is only day 2 in Belize and what an adventure it has been so far! It felt like we were never going to arrive as our trip here sent us on a few detours.
We ended up with an amazing group of people, all who share a common goal of wanting to make a difference in the lives of the individuals in Punta Gorda. I would say that so far, we are meeting our goal in every way, shape and form!
Day one for me was at Hillside Health Clinic where I had the opportunity to work in the pharmacy side by side other student pharmacists and a pharmacy technician ( who is from Belize and is an officially trained pharm tech! ) It was really neat to see how the pharmacy operated. They do not use pill bottles so all patient medications are distributed in plastic baggies with hand written labels taped to the outside. There is not double check on prescriptions so it encouraged me to be extra cautious that I was picking out and packaging the proper medications! The shelves of medications are arranged by drug class rather than in alphabetical order so if I didn't already know this before, I had to learn which class each drug was in in order to be as fast, efficient, and accurate as possible. There is rare to no distribution of narcotics at Hillside. Most of what I saw being distributed was medications for diabetes, fungal infections and parasites and pain medications such as tylenol and ibuprofen. It was really neat to see how they could make do with what they have and every patient who needed treatment did not leave without receiving it! I observed how many of the patients who have been visiting Hillside long term really put trust and faith in their health care providers because Hillside has such a wonderful reputation of helping each and every person in need.
I also had the opportunity to do a few home visits in the town of Punta Gorda. A few of the nurses, med students and a pharmacist will travel into the town to see patients who are not mobile enough to make it to the clinic. It was a real eye opener to see how many of the patients live. The living conditions are so different from what we are used to in Canada. It makes me really appreciate what I've got.
I think the biggest thing that I can take from this experience so far is the way that I have managed to adapt to such different ways of living, a completely different environment and people and learning to be able to live without all the necessities that we take for granted back home! My hope is that my ease to adapt in new environments and with new people will serve me well in pursuing my career job. I am excited to see what the rest of this adventure will bring!
Kristin Ligi
Pharmacy Technician Program Student
NSCC Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 17:31 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia health pharmacy study_abroad Comments (6)

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