While many of the Project HOPE volunteers are spread out at various medical sites in the Philippines, several have stayed back on the USNS Mercy to ensure medications are properly distributed both on and off the ship.
HOPE volunteers Alexis Hargbol and Kofi Kyei-Mensah, both fourth-year pharmacy students from Shenandoah University, have kept busy as part of the Pacific Partnership Pharmacy team, distributing needed medicines both in the field and in the surgical rooms, while learning about pharmacy outside the classroom.
Both of the students spoke highly about each of their co-workers, who they say have helped them become even better pharmacists over the past six weeks.
"Since being here, I have learned how to make IV's in a hospital setting, and how patients medical needs are treated," says Hargbol. "I can really take what I have learned from school, and from Pacific Partnership, and apply it to my next rotation, which will make me a stronger pharmacist. I am really going to miss the team I have worked with when the mission is over. They have taught me so much, and I will be forever grateful."
Kyei-Mensah has also learned a lot while also playing a key role in patient care, working with both the surgical team and the Pharmacy department on the ship.
"I have learned many things, like different styles of the IV booths, and in-the-field patient care, to dispensing patient medication," says Kyei-Mensah.
Kyei-Mensah talked about the unity of the department, “which made it a very enriching environment to learn and grow.”
With their portion of mission coming to an end, these two Project HOPE volunteers will return home, knowing they provided needed patient care and learned new skills that they will take with them into their pharmacy careers.
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