2013 Global Penicillingirl Project Mission in Guatemala
In November 2013, The Global Penicillingirl Project returned to rural Guatemala with a group of more than 20 doctors, dentists, pharmacists, and translators. For four days, the group worked in an elementary school that was temporarily converted into our clinic and pharmacy. Each day of the mission, members from different surrounding villages were encouraged to visit the clinic.
The area of Guatemala where we visited and worked in is severely under served, medical and dental care are very hard to come by. Most people live in very modest homes, many without electricity or running water. Almost all of the local population live in homes that don’t have stoves, so everyone cooks on open fire pits that use wood as a heat source. Due to this practice, the entire area constantly smells of burning wood causing air quality to be very poor.
Here is a little more about the people who made our 2013 mission possible.
The dental team:
John Pfail, DDS
Joseph Pantaleo, DDS
Monica Song, DDS
Moira Groh, DDS
Matt Weil, DDS
During the 4 days working in the village, the dental team made a huge impact on the community and helped an astounding number of people. They saw a total of 643 patients. They performed 488 tooth extractions, they did 62 restorations, and provided 110 fluoride treatments. The communities that surround the area we worked in have NO access to dentists so our team was able to bring drastic relief to many people.
The Medical Team:
Alan Briones, MD
Stephanie Sterling, MD MPH
B. Raul Quijano Rondan, MD
Monica Speicher, MD
Robert Allison, MD
Nancy Elliot, PA
The medical team divided the population by age and one group treated adults while another group focused on the kids that came to see us.
The pediatric team
Members of the Guatemalan Ministry of Health were on hand to help with records and to track patients who were seen at our clinic. The medical team saw a total of 682 patients during the mission; 409 adult patients and 273 children. Among adults, many complained of pain and soreness, perhaps because of the manual labor most of the population are forced to perform in order to support their families. Among the pediatric patients, many patients were treated for gastritis, for skin ailments and for upper respiratory infections .
The Pharmacy Team:
Nina Yousefzadeh, PharmD
Elsie Wong, PharmD
Suzanna Gim, PharmD
The pharmacy team filled 1353 prescriptions during the mission. They filled 797 prescriptions for adult patients and 556 for the pediatric patients. The Global PenicillinGirl Project brought all of the medicine with them from the US. They were responsible for educating the patients and making sure that each was given a briefing on how to take the prescription or to give it to their kids.
Many patients in the pharmacy were provided with vitamins to help improve their health.
Global PenicillinGirl Project works with Vivamos Mejor a Guatemalan non-profit organization dedicated to helping improve the quality of life of people living in various rural communities. For more information on Vivamos Mejor, visit vivamosmejor.org.gt
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