While we believe that it’s important to serve our local community by raising money for awareness and research of GI diseases, we also recognize the need that exists outside of our own country. This summer, Dr. Sam Fulp, Dr. Thomas Gavigan, Alice Gavigan, Renae Lynch, RN, and Michelle Buchoux, RN had the opportunity to serve that need on a week-long mission trip to Nicaragua.
The team worked with endoscopy counterparts in two locations in Managua: Hospital Roberto Carlos Huembes and Hospital Central Managua, where they observed and performed/assisted with EGD and colonoscopy procedures. The physicians gave a lecture on endoscopy to medical interns while the RNs presented information on scope reprocessing standards to interns and endo staff.
The team also traveled to another facility, Fundacion Chinandega 2001, Betania in Chinandega, Nicaragua. During their two-day visit, they performed EGD procedures on adult patients with symptoms including abdominal/epigastric pain and nausea.
Each team member came back from the trip with a better appreciation of the day-to-day life of the Nicaraguan people. They also left with a better understanding of the Nicaraguan health care structure and standards, the specific endo needs of the population, and how to evaluate/identify suitable sites to continue similar trips in the future in an effort to educate and improve local standards in the specialty. In addition to providing medical care to an under-served community, the team left behind knowledge in endoscopy and cleaning standards and looks forward to continuing their mission in the future.