The trip to Guatemala was the best trip of my life so far. I enjoyed immersing into the new culture, exploring nature, trying local food. I made new friends that I know will be forever in my life. And I feel great to say that I also had an opportunity to give back by being a medical volunteer.
I absolutely loved working at the local hospital, helping nurses and doctors care for postoperative patients. I gained important skills that will be useful to me in my future career as a nurse practitioner.
As a medical volunteer, I began by assisting staff during meals and patient transports. After I’ve gained more experience, I was trusted to work at the top of my scope by conducting more responsible tasks such as monitoring patients’ vital signs, changing IV fluid bags, and administering prescribed medications. During discharge, I was able to help out by translating and interpreting the physician's instructions that were written in Spanish. It was very helpful that the program offers homestay. My Spanish got even better as I had to use it all day!
Guatemala was an incredible and humbling experience, and I was fortunate to be a part of a team of current and aspiring medical workers, who gave their best to bring optimal healthcare to the less fortunate.