Volunteer Nurses Ann Perez of Houston, Texas and Emily Sisa of Bermuda, arrived in Nepal on Saturday and got straight to work. With a brief stop at the hotel where they will be staying, the two immediately joined HOPE partners on the ground to treat earthquake victims, including children, in medical tents set up outside a hospital near Kathmandu.
The two nurses were already on a volunteer mission for Project HOPE, working at the NRI Academy of Sciences in Vijayawada, India, teaching nurses in both the clinical and classroom setting. Both immediately volunteered to leave for Nepal as soon as they heard the news of the earthquake.
“I signed up with HOPE to improve nursing,” Ann explained. “At the heart of nursing is patient care and it just seemed logical to go where the most pressing need for patient care is now. After having been in India for four months, I couldn't think of a more pressing place, but then the earthquake happened and I realized that everything is about triaging/prioritizing.”
A HOPE volunteer following Hurricane Katrina, Ann added, “As a former disaster relief HOPE volunteer, I trust HOPE to watch out for me so that I can treat patients and help support local health care professionals.”
Emily, and emergency room nurse, has similar reasons for not hesitating to go to Nepal. “Upon seeing the images and hearing the stories out of Nepal following the Himalayan earthquake, I felt compelled to offer my ER nursing skills. I look forward to collaborating with international disaster relief organizations in the coming weeks to treat patients and offer support to the local health care professionals.”
Later in the week, Emily and Ann will move to a different medical site to provide relief to local medical staff in Nepal, who are currently working around the clock to care for all the earthquake victims from Kathmandu and the outlying villages where medical facilities have been destroyed.
Plans are under way to send additional HOPE volunteer nurses to Nepal by later this week.
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