PA Class of 2018 NicaraguaTwenty-four students of the UAB School of Health ProfessionsPhysician Assistant Studies program delivered medical supplies and care to Somotillo, Nicaragua from August 19 – 26, 2017.

The students served in local schools, villages, and a clinic – Clinica Ministerios de Jesus – every day.

“Although we all initially signed up for this trip to serve in the clinic, the village ministry was truly life changing,” said Jessica Mena, UAB PA Class of 2018. “The joy on the face of each child and parent that we were able to serve was a humbling reminder of how blessed we are to be in school learning how to help people for the rest of our lives.”

The clinic was run every morning and afternoon with UAB PA students participating in triage, eye clinic and triage XL, which is where students worked up the patients, did physical exams and presented the patient to the doctor.

PA Students NicaraguaDuring the five clinic days, the group of students and doctors were able to serve over 1,000 patients. Speaking to the patients, students learned that some people came from over two hours away to be seen and treated medically.

See Trip Photos on Flickr

“We saw patients come in for stomach pain, cold/flu, asthma, conjunctivitis, multiple rashes, diabetes, blood pressure, chest pain, muscle weakness, and many more illnesses,” said Tori James, UAB PA Class of 2018.

The students served many villages including Casablanca, Las Liras, El Tejar and Jinocuao. And they visited many schools including Sacred Heart, El Puma, El Platanal, Jicarito and Pascuala. On every trip, the UAB PA students led a lesson on how and when to properly wash hands, they sang songs with the kids or put on a skit and then ended each trip by serving dinner to the local villagers.

“It was an honor to serve Somotillo and the surrounding villages,” said James. “It was extremely humbling to serve everyone that came to the clinic; whether only a few weeks old or 70+ years old, the patient’s gratitude toward our efforts to give free medical treatment was evident.”