Presented by Jennifer Setlick, MD
This year marked the inaugural presentation of the Blike/Cravero International Pediatric Sedation Advocacy Award, and Dr Setlik’s presentation that afternoon further helped to highlight the importance of involvement in global health. Dr Setlik gave an overview of practical considerations with global missions to name a few:
- Personal safety with food, travel
- Culture with particular attention to dress
- Checking country’s policies on expired medications
- Communication with the native people- phone access is prevalent, but enlisting the help of a translator
Dr Setlick highlighted the contributions of the team, the interchangeability of roles and the challenges that the residents face in just getting to you. The facilities may be of a primitive nature, but the volunteers need to be prepared for anything. The equipment may not be maintained, and things are shared and reused. Clean water is precious and not always readily available. It may need to be transported a far distance from the facility.
Volunteers on global health missions are problem solvers, working in teams and making use of whatever is available. Most importantly, they support each other as they may experience moments of loneliness, hot tempers and lack of control. And they do it to help others, and the smiles on the children’s faces are truly a testament to this. So for those of us who would like to spread the word and make a difference on a global basis, move this up higher on your bucket list and consider getting involved in any way possible. Thank you, Dr Setlick, for inspiring me and others in the audience.