FAQ

Questions for Medical Student Missions

View as PDF: MSM FAQ.pdf

A. Basic Description of the Program


1. Briefly describe the purposed program and its location. Provide a program

mission statement.


a) This program was developed, with adherence to the Standards of Good

Practice established by The Forum on Education Abroad, to provide

students with the opportunity to voluntarily participate in Medical Student

Missions, Inc.’s current medical service project in Verretes, Haiti.


b) Our mission statement for this project shall be that of Medical Student

Missions, Inc.:


i. Generally: Medical Student Missions, Inc. is a non-profit

organization dedicated to providing medical students with the

opportunity to volunteer their talents through domestic and

international medical service.


ii. Specific to the current medical service project in Verretes, Haiti:

Medical Student Missions, Inc. provides unique “Learning through

Service” opportunities to highly motivated volunteers. Though

designed for medical students, the success of field operations will

also involve the special skills that nurses, physicians, and other

paramedical and lay volunteers bring and share while caring for the

citizens of the Artibonite, the largest political district of Haiti.

This authority has also requested that Medical Student Missions,

Inc., provide material and academic assistance to the nursing academy

in Gonaives, which is run under the direction of Dr. Mercedes Philogene.

This effort is being coordinated by volunteers of the International

Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers.


2. Co-sponsoring U.S. institutions or organizations, if any


a) Medical Student Missions, Inc. (www.medicalstudentmissions.org) – a

registered non-profit corporation with pending 501(c)3 tax exempt status.


b) International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers

(www.iamat.org) – a US and Canadian non-profit corporation with 501(c)3

tax exempt status


i. Provides staff and material assistance to Medical Student Missions,

Inc. trips


ii. Has taken the responsibility for procuring French language teaching

materials for a nursing academy in the Artibonite district.


3. Dates of the program and frequency of repetition


a) The current session of this program will take place from 12/18/2010 to

01/01/2011


b) Repetition will occur frequently and sporadically when students are on

regularly schedule breaks (i.e. spring break, summer recess, Thanksgiving

break, etc.).


  1. 4.Estimated number of participants; minimum and maximum numbers

  2. that program can accommodate


a)12 Indiana University Students will participate in the first session of this

program in December 2010.


b) This program can accommodate as few as 3 or up to 30 student

participants, though Medical Student Missions, Inc. is capable of

accommodating a virtually unlimited of volunteers through additional site

development.


5. What is the academic rationale for conducting this program overseas?


a) The mission for this program coincides with that of Medical Student

Missions, Inc. for the current project: to provide learning through service to

one of the most underserved areas in the Western Hemisphere, namely a

section of rural Haiti. While there are poor and underserved areas of the

United States in need of technical and volunteer aid as well, this need is of

monumental proportions in Haiti. The current cholera crisis has increased

the need for this program within Haiti, but also provides increased

responsibility and skill advancement opportunities to the service mission

participants.

Though the following outline of the Medical Student Missions, Inc.

objectives is specific to medical students, this program will be open to all

university students as we feel that any student will benefit greatly

from this experience. This program seeks to provide students with greater

opportunities for service by promoting volunteer medical service in

addition to the typical course-load associated with a four-year medical

education. We know that medical students want to provide for those in

need, but often miss the opportunity to do so. Under the supervision of

local Haitian physicians as well as other international medical volunteers,

this program will provide students that opportunity. What better way to

foster a service-oriented attitude in tomorrow’s doctors than by

encouraging medical-students to serve those in the greatest need at an

early point in their development as physicians?

Even though medical students are required to commit an extraordinary

amount of time to studying during the four-year span of their education,

many students still have an interest in pursuing opportunities for medical

service. Almost all medical students are required to complete the

American Medical College Application Service (AMCAS) application,

which serves as a central application for most medical schools. The

description of volunteer activities comprises a major component of this

application and a background in service is important for admission to

medical school. After enrolling in medical school, however, many students

find that the opportunities to volunteer their time and talents in service are

much fewer than those available to them throughout the course of their

undergraduate or even high school education. Of the available

opportunities, only a minute number fall within the scope of the medical

field thus leaving the service-minded medical students without an arena in

which to put their talents to work.

Additionally, there is often a “hardening of the heart” associated with

medical school due to the combination of the stress of the rigorous course

load and the lack of real patient interaction in most curriculums. Service

experiences throughout the duration of a medical education can be vital

not only to avoiding this phenomenon, but also to nurturing the

compassionate spirit that drives medical students towards health care in

the first place. Most anyone would agree that a common quality of all

great physicians is a compassion that allows them to connect to each

patient on an individual level. The stresses of the medical field, however,

can diminish this compassionate nature very quickly. It is vital that doctors

and students alike recognize this danger and work constantly to avoid

such a tragedy. The opportunity to volunteer through medical service, and

to provide care for those in need, can have a great influence on boosting

student moral and avoiding physician burnout later on in life.

It seems that this lack of opportunities for medical students to participate

in volunteer medical service activities stems from several factors with the

primary obstacle being a sheer lack of the time necessary to coordinate

and plan such activities. There are laws in place in the United States, as

well as in most other countries, that impose stringent regulations on the

types and levels of care that medical students are permitted to provide.

These types of laws are necessary to ensure that the highest quality of

medical care is maintained for all patients, in all situations and are vital to

guarantee that the under-served are not further maligned by second-rate

medicine. Those stipulations, however, do not devalue the knowledge

and skills medical students can offer in providing a valuable service to

those in need of medical care. With proper planning and student

preparation, as well as the inclusion of licensed health professionals on

each service team, medical students are able to provide credible

assistance in the clinical setting and help ensure that the distribution of

quality care is maximized. Medical students are perfectly capable of

assessing community health, providing public health education, taking

basic histories, and completing general physical exams.

Several well-respected members of the medical community, such as Dr.

Paul Farmer (Harvard Medical School; Partners in Health) and Dr. Jay

Lemery (Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, NY), have expressed

the need for a larger American presence in the medical service world and

some have even suggested the integration of a service component into

the medical educational curriculum (see Citations below). This program

recognizes the need for an increased American presence in the

international medical community and is taking steps to make such a

change by providing current medical students with realistic opportunities to

provide service in underprivileged nations. By providing more service

opportunities for medical students, this program will promote the

development of more service-minded physicians among graduates.

Anyone who has had the privilege of participating in significant service

activities knows how addicting it can be. By involving medical students in

medical service missions, this program hopes to promote the development

of physicians who are willing to provide for the under-served for the

duration of their careers.


Citations:

Lemery J. “A Case for White Coat Diplomacy”. April 7, 2010. JAMA, Vol.

303, No. 13, pg. 1307-1308

Kerry VB, Auld S, Farmer P. “An International Service Corps for Health –

An Unconventional Prescription for Diplomacy”. September 23, 2010. New

England Journal of Medicine, Vol. 363, No. 13, pg. 1199-1201.


6. Explain how the site was chosen and evaluated.


a) This site was chosen and evaluated by a Medical Student Missions, Inc.

team, including Medical Student Missions, Inc. Chief Advisor Dr. William

Forgey, during a November 2010 trip directed specifically at developing

clinical sites for future medical mission trips. Dr. Forgey has extensive

expertise in this area due to prior experiences with this type of site

development. During thirty months of military service in the Vietnam War,

Dr. Forgey was responsible for obtaining housing for psychological

operations personnel in all four combat corps (zones). This career

involved similar issues to those encountered in evaluating the

accommodations and food support, security and appropriateness for

Medical Student Missions, Inc. operations members.

The Medical Student Missions, Inc. onsite liaison trip executed in

November 2010 confirmed the ability of the in-country host and staff to

house and transport 30 Medical Student Missions, Inc. volunteers and

reported that the host has an internal staff of approximately 8 on-site

personnel and a total of 60 staff members within their organization,

including field workers. Upon the assessment of Dr. Forgey, and the rest

of the November 2010 team, Medical Student Missions, Inc. has

concluded that the site has adequate security or operations, both by its

geographical location, physical construction, and number of security

personnel employed by its owner and also the positive relationship

between its owner and the local community. The food service preparation

was professional and superior with most food items coming from the farms

operated by the Centre’s owner, Mr. Vilna Josaphat.

Additionally, Medical Student Missions, Inc. has been granted direct

permission from the local governmental unit, Ministere de la Sante

Publique et de la Population, Dr. Dieula Louissant, Directrice Sanitaire

d’Artibonite. This authority allows Medical Student Missions, Inc. to place its

medical students, physicians, nurses, and paramedical staff in all public

hospitals and clinics in the Artibonite district.

The following is a detailed description of the November Medical Student

Missions, Inc. development trip:


Working through contacts established during an August 2010 Medical

Student Missions, Inc. medical service trip to Dessalines, contact

was established with Mr. Vilna Josaphat, a professor of agriculture, who

had developed an institute for the instruction of horticulture techniques in

Verrettes, The Centre de formation Leveque. Subsequent to the January

2010 earthquake that devastated Haiti, the Centre became a hosting

facility for medical relief missions. In November 2010 Medical Student

Missions, Inc. sent two Indiana University School of Medicine students, an

additional medical volunteer and three staff (Medical Student Missions,

Inc. Chief Advisor, Dr. William Forgey; IAMAT volunteer, Lorenzo

Marcolongo; Purdue University MBA student, Eric Clement) to evaluate

the transportation capabilities, housing and food service, and security of

the Centre. Working with contacts established during an August 2010

Medical Student Missions, Inc. service trip to Dessalines, Haiti, medical

students Joshua Garza (MSII) and Tianyi Luo (MSII) and medical

assistant Eric Mance worked in the cholera treatment center at the

Hospital de Verrettes, northern Haiti. Lorenzo Marcolongo of the

International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers (IAMAT;

Toronto, Canada), traveled with the party which also included Dr. William

Forgey of Merrillville, Indiana. Dr. Forgey and Mr. Marcolongo met with Dr.

Dieula Louissaint, the Medical Director of the Arbonite District, and

discussed further coordination for the development of a long-term

partnership with Medical Student Missions, Inc. The Arbonite district is the

area that experienced the start of the cholera outbreak and which is the

most heavily hit. There are four main hospitals in this district with only 100

Haitian professionals serving a population of over 100,000. Major cities

include Gonaives and St. Marc, but there are dozens of small, one-room

clinics in widely scattered rural villages. Tianyi Luo (MSII) and Dr. Forgey

visited the cholera treatment unit and hospital in the mountain village of

Petite-Riviere de l’Artibonite, a trip by jeep that required forging streams

and rutted trails. Logistics have been established to provide volunteers

access to these areas if desired. The group also identified some highly

qualified translators that will accompany future medical volunteers and

developed national and international connections while working alongside

physicians and nurses from Belgium, Cuba and various regions of the

United States.



B. Eligibility


7. What are the requirements


  1. a)Participants must complete an application and be accepted as an eligible volunteer

  2. by Medical Student Missions, Inc. (www.medicalstudentmissions.org)


b) Medical Student Missions, Inc., is open to all persons irrespective of state or

country of origin. On its August 2010 and November 2010 trips persons

carrying US, Canadian, Swiss and Indian passports have participated.

Students from various medical schools including the University of

Washington School of Medicine, the University of Medicine and Dentistry

of New Jersey, Indiana University School of Medicine and the Rosalind

Franklin University Chicago Medical School participated as well.


8. Describe the pre-departure orientation (how many sessions; who will conduct

them)


a) Participating students will be required to participate in at least 4

following pre-departure orientation sessions (other additional preparatory

sessions will be available on an optional basis) which will be conducted by

Medical Student Missions, Inc. (the first prior to commitment for

participation and the last three between commitment and departure):


i. Pre-commitment Trip Overview: detailed description of the goals of

the trips, the benefits of participation and also the risks associated

with participation (including the United States State Department

Travel Warning for Haiti, United States Center for Disease Control

recommendations and warnings for travel to Haiti, and International

Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers guidelines for travel

to Haiti)


ii. Dangers of the Trip: review of the United States State Department

Travel Warning for Haiti, United States Center for Disease Control

recommendations and warnings for travel to Haiti, and International

Associatin for Medical Assistance to Travelers guidelines for travel

to Haiti

iii. Clinical Medical Preparation: overview of clinical “health picture” in

the Arbonite District (prevalent diseases and pathologies, local

standards of practice and care, etc.), acclimation with the

Integrated Management of Childhood Illness protocol developed by

the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s

Fund as well as the cholera classification system established by the

World Health Organization.


iv. Logistical Trip Overview: detailed review of travel procedures

(domestic transportation, air travel, and transportation in Haiti),

room and board arrangements, emergency contacts, disaster

preparation, and other pertinent logistical issues.


v. Other Optional Preparatory Materials via the Medical Student

Missions, Inc. website – www.medicalstudentmissions.org:Free online

training in basic Creole


9. Describe the on-site orientation (who will conduct it). Distinguish

between academic preparation sessions and those that focus on logistics.


a) Medical Student Missions, Inc. will coordinate a one-half-day in-country

formal orientation one the first day of the program in conjunction with Mr.

Vilna Josaphat at the Centre de formation Leveque. This session, as

proposed by Mr. Josaphat and approved by Medical Student Missions,

Inc., will consist of training in basic Creole greetings and medial terms as

well as education in reference to local culture and customs.


b) Onsite clinical orientation will be directed by Medical Student Missions,

Inc. in conjunction with local physicians on-site in Verretes and/or

representatives from the office of Dr. Dieula Louissaint, the Medical

Director of the Arbonite District and will be held immediately upon arrival

to the clinic. Continued education and instruction will take place

throughout the duration of the program.


10. Describe the program's purpose and activities


a) The purpose of this program is to help to create opportunities for students

to become involved in significant volunteer medical service activities early on

in their development as physicians and professionals. With hope, these students

will then maintain the compassionate characteristics cultivated by this project

and continue to serve those in need through out their careers and lives. Additionally,

by working through Medical Student Missions, Inc., students will have the

opportunity to actively collaborate with Haitian and international medical personnel

to provide services in public hospitals, neighborhood clinics and cholera treatment

centers. This experience will provide abundant opportunities for students to gain

insight into new and unknown cultures as well as develop life-long friendships across

international lines.


b) The following is a description provided by Medical Student Missions, Inc.

of its upcoming December 2010 relief effort:

Medical Student Missions, Inc. provides unique “Learning through Service”

opportunities to highly motivated volunteers. Though designed for medical

students, the success of field operations will also involve the special skills

that nurses, physicians, and other paramedical and lay volunteers bring

and share while caring for the citizens of the Artibonite, the largest political

district of Haiti.

Working under the guidance and approval of Dr. Dieula Louissaint, the

Directrice Sanitaire d’Artibonite, members of Medical Student Mission, Inc.

are authorized to work in all of the public hospitals and clinics in the

region. The Artibonite is the epicenter of the current cholera epidemic. It

has the largest number of cases and its major hospitals in Saint-Marc and

Gonaïves are the hardest hit by the epidemic, but all clinics and hospitals

in the region are over-whelmed triaging and managing this disease in

addition to their regular duties.

In August 2010, Medical Student Missions, Inc. sent 17 medical students,

one physician, 3 medical assistants and an MBA candidate on a medical

service project to Dessalines, situated in the Plaine de l’Artibonite

department astride the Rivière de l’Estère. Joined there by medical

students from the University of New Jersey and University of Washington

and eventually by two nurse practitioners along with support personnel,

this group cared for over 1,600 people during a two-week period.

It was from the contacts made during this trip that Medical Student

Missions, Inc. was asked to return with a small group over Thanksgiving to

coordinate future activities and to provide immediate help in the cholera

treatment center attached to the hospital in Verrettes. The organization

was also asked to provide direct assistance to the nursing school in

Gonaïves. This effort is being coordinated under the Director of the

nursing academy, Dr Mercédes Filogêne. Medical Student Misisons, Inc.

provided direct help with four of its students working in Verrettes alongside

two nurses from the United States and other international groups.

Representatives also performed on-site visitations and coordinated

December activities in the cholera treatment centers at Petite-Rivière de

l’Artibonites and La Chapelle. Two other clinics were chosen for future

assistance as well.

The December trip, planned once again to coincide with time off from the

medical school schedule, will involve 17 medical students, from different

universities as well as the physician advisor and medical assistant

spending two weeks during this critical time at the above cholera

treatment centers.



C. Student Learning and Development


11. Describe how the program will bring students into direct contact with the host

culture in meaningful ways.


a) Students will be working in clinical settings in local government hospitals,

neighborhood clinics, and cholera treatment centers and unites in the

Artibonite district of Haiti.


b) Volunteer physicians and nurse practitioners will be working under the

operational control of local Haitian physicians.


c) Student volunteers and paramedical personnel will work under the direct

supervision of Haitian physicians and nursing staff in addition to

physicians volunteering through Medical Student Missions, Inc.



12. Indicate how the program incorporates the program site into its pedagogy.


a) The program site is an absolutely indispensible component of this

program. As participants will be actively working in hospitals and clinics in

the Artibonite district of Haiti, it is absolutely vital that this program

take place onsite. Opportunities for such international cooperation and

integration in a service-based learning experience through an organization

(Medical Student Missions, Inc.) with an established local relationship and

official governmental approval for practice are few and far between. The

learning experiences that this program will provide, as described

previously and below, would not be possible at any other location.


b) Local methods of managing the classification patients and treatment

protocols within the local availability of materials will be followed.


c) Local customs and community interaction will be fostered.


d) Pre-trip Creole language familiarization and on-site one half day training

for language phrases and local customs will be provided for all participants

by Medical Student Missions, Inc.


e) Medical Student Missions, Inc. volunteers have also been accepted to

assist with English language classes at a grade school located near the

Centre de formation Leveque. This school has an enrollment of approximately

350 children and employs only 4 local teachers. Educational materials will

be transported to this school by Medical Student Missions, Inc. subsequent

to the evaluation of needs performed on its November 2010 trip. Participants

in this program will have the opportunity to work with Medical Student Missions,

Inc. in this effort as well as Medical Student Missions, Inc. directed training

sessions for us of a family size gravity water filtration device that will be distributed

locally by Medical Student Missions, Inc., in cooperation with the products

manufacturer, Sawyer Products, Inc.


  1. 13.How will the program link discipline-specific learning outcomes to

  2. the location of the program?


a) This program will immerse students in geographic specific medical and

cultural issues, will attempt to integrate local customs, and will attempt to

apply current American medical techniques when appropriate. Though

any university student may participate in this program, we anticipate that

most every student interested in this type of service work will have a fairly

significant interest in a career related at least in some way to health care.

The potential learning outcomes created by this program in working through

Medical Student Missions, Inc. are described with specificity to medical

students, though these same outcomes can apply to any student. An

increased understanding of the global economic gradient and the cultivation

of a compassionate spirit of service can benefit not only the students

participating in this program, but society as a whole. As returned participants

begin to reflect on their experience and explain to others the countless benefits

of such work, more and more individuals will develop an interest in serving others.


  1. 14.How will the program provide language development appropriate to the

  2. mission of the program?


a) Pre-trip Creole language familiarization and on-site one half day training

for language phrases and local customs will be provided to all participants

under the direction of Medical Student Missions, Inc.


  1. b)Translators: During its November 2010 development trip, Medical Student

  2. Missions, Inc. identified several qualified translators capable of speaking at

  3. the least English and Creole, with several speaking Spanish and/or French

  4. in addition. Interaction with patients will be facilitated through these

  5. Creole-English interpreters. Past Medical Student Missions, Inc. volunteers

  6. have noted that in their experience these contract employees become good

  7. friends of the volunteers to whom they have been assigned and a considerable

  8. interaction and exchange of ideas occurs during these encounters.


15. Describe how the students' international experiences will be integrated upon

return to campus (re-entry activities, student publications, exhibits, etc.).


a) Because students participating in this program will be required to return to

classes shortly after the completion of this program, extensive organized

re-entry activities will not likely be possible. Returned participants will,

however, have access to an extensive network of like-minded individuals

through Medical Student Missions, Inc.



b) Medical Student Missions, Inc. also asks that each returned volunteer

write a short (one-page) reflection on their experience for publication in the

“Blog” section of the Medical Student Missions, Inc. website –

www.medicalstudentmissions.org. Participants are also encouraged to

share any photos or videos they may have taken during the program with

Medical Student Missions, Inc. for inclusion in the “Media” section of the

Medical Student Missions, Inc. website –

www.medicalstudentmissions.org.


c) Each participant in this program will also be eligible for membership in

Medical Student Missions, Inc. Through this membership, participants will

be invited to participate to whatever degree they choose in various

Medical Student Missions, Inc. public relations and development activities,

including, but not limited to presentations, information sessions and

various marketing projects. Medical Student Missions, Inc. maintains the

recruitment of qualified volunteers, both nationally and internationally, as a

top priority. Additionally, Medical Student Missions, Inc. membership has

discussed various research projects that can be developed as a byproduct

of the volunteer activities in Haiti and also begun the development

of a grant application initiative for the organizations. Those students

choosing to accept the invitation for membership offered by Medical

Student Missions, Inc. to participants in this program will have the

opportunity to become an integral part of any of the aforementioned

projects if they so wish.


D. Support Services Abroad


16. Will there be a U.S. faculty resident director on site?


a) Yes. Medical Student Missions, Inc. has recruited Dr. Demika

Washington, M.D. to be the U.S. faculty resident director on site in

Verretes, Haiti. Dr. Washington spent the past summer working in the

hospitals and medical clinics in Verretes, Haiti – the same site that

Medical Student Missions, Inc. has developed for its upcoming December

2010 relief mission as well as numerous future missions and the site at

which this program will be taking place. Dr. Washington is fluent in

English and Spanish and is capable of conversing in basic Creole and she

is personally acquainted with the international staff at the cholera treatment

center.


b) Dr. William Forgey, M.D., Chief Advisor and Co-Founder of Medical

Student Missions, Inc., will also be present on site.


17. If not, describe the office or individual overseas who will address students’

logistical, academic, personal, medical, and emergency concerns.


a) Though a U.S. faculty resident director will be on site, Medical Student

Missions, Inc. has provided the following additional information in regards

to addressing students’ logistical, academic, personal, medical, and

emergency concerns.

i. It is not anticipated that any Medical Student Missions, Inc.

programs will operate in Haiti without direct physician supervision

and assistance arranged by Medical Student Missions, Inc.


ii. Logistical concerns will be managed in Haiti by the Centre de

formation Leveque, which is the institution that is also providing

housing, food services, and instruction regarding local culture.


E. Health, Safety and Security


  1. 18.Country Specific Information Sheet(s) for Haiti by the U.S. Department

  2. of State and the Centers for Disease Control.


a) United States Department of State


i. Country Specific Information Sheet:

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1134.html


ii. Travel Warning:

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/tw/tw_4632.html


iii. Recent Embassy Notices for American Citizens:

http://haiti.usembassy.gov/



b) United States Center for Disease Control


i. Health Information for Travelers to Haiti:

http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/haiti.aspx


ii. Guidance for Relief Workers and Others Traveling to Haiti for

Earthquake Response: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/content/newsannouncements/

relief-workers-haiti.aspx


iii. Outbreak Notice – Cholera in Haiti:

http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/content/outbreak-notice/haiticholera.

Aspx


19. What safety and security preparation will be provided by the group? What

security measures will be taken on their behalf?


a) Professional security will be provided by Mr. Story Louis Joseph. He will

accompany transportation movements between Port Au Prince and

Verrettes and also local transportation to nearby clinics. Safety and security

preparation will be explained in detail during both pre-departure and onsite

orientation sessions. Additionally, extensive information regarding potential

safety and security issues will be available to participants via Medical Student

Missions, Inc.


b) Per the analysis or Dr. William Forgey, M.D., Chief Advisor of Medical

Student Missions, Inc., whose credibility in these matters was established in

Question 6, the site established for this program has employed adequate safety

and security measures. The Centre de formation Leveque has on-site security

for the compound 24 hours per day and is isolated on three sides by high solid

wall construction with heavy metal gates and by a river gorge on the fourth side.


c) A trip roster will be sent to the United States Embassy in Port Au Prince

with names, emergency contact information, passport numbers, flight numbers

and times, and local telephone numbers for the Centre de formation Leveque,

the accompany staff personnel, and Mr. Story Louis Joseph.


F. Supplementary Activities


20. Describe excursions or group activities and how they directly complement the

academic program.


  1. a)Medical Student Missions, Inc. anticipates that students will have the

  2. opportunity to participate in further visitations to clinics and hospitals

  3. in the Artibonite Department for site survey and experiential purposes.

  4. During the December 2010 Medical Student Missions, Inc. trip, depending

  5. upon the needs of the cholera response, students will be able to visit the

  6. Albert Schweitzer Hospital, located a few miles from the Medical Student

  7. Missions, Inc. base facility in Verrettes. Placement of students within this

  8. hospital during the December trip is a distinct possibility.


  1. b)Observation of local agricultural practices is an underlying interest of

  2. Medical Student Mission, Inc.’s local sponsor. Tours of local student farms

  3. may be available.


  1. c)Medical Student Missions, Inc. has informed this program that, if time permits,

  2. student participants may have time for additional group cultural experiences.

  3. For example, during an August 2010 Medical Student Missions, Inc. relief trip,

  4. volunteers visited the forts constructed in 1804 surrounding the town of

  5. Dessalines, the first capitol of Haiti.


G. Room and Board


21. Describe student housing accommodations and meal arrangements in detail.


a) Full room and board will be provided by Mr. Vilna Josaphat at The Centre

de Formation Leveque including proper sleeping and living space and at

least two (large breakfast and dinner) meals each day, though leftovers

from the previous night’s dinner will likely be available for a third meal

(lunch). This facility was used by Medical Student Missions, Inc. during its

previously described (Section B-4a) November 2010 trip and was found to

provided far superior accommodations and food service at half of the cost

of previous facilities utilized by Medical Student Missions, Inc.


b) Rooms range in style from private to dormitory with screen windows,

electric fans. Private rooms include private showers and toilets and

dormitory rooms include group showers and shared toilets. The total

housing capacity is 40.


c) The food service is worthy of a resort. Food preparation is performed by

an overseer and a staff of 4 adult food service personnel. Over 80% of

the food served comes from the centers own farms. The meals consist of

12 different varieties of vegetable and fruit items. Meat is served at each

meal and consisted of various preparations of fish or goat. Distilled water

and hot beverages are served with each meal. Fresh coconut juice is also

served at each meal. Food is served hot. All utensils are clean and

wrapped prior to use.


d) Medical Student Missions, Inc. additionally provides a significant number

of freeze-dried meals (Mountain House ®) for use in the event that the

host supply becomes inadequate for volunteer demands. One weeks

rations are stored on-site at The Centre de formation Leveque and

another weeks rations will be sent with the Medical Student Missions, Inc.

December 2010 team.


e) All group members will carry a water bottle with in-line filter system. Water

in the facility is available for drinking that is stated to be clean, but Medical

Student Missions, Inc. advocates that all cold water be re-filtered by the

group members through their filter-bottles.



H. Student Budget


  1. 22.What are the estimated costs for room and board, personal expenses and

  2. international airfare?


  1. a)Personal expense to participants will include a fee of $800 for one week or $1400

  2. for two weeks ($700 for each additional week after that) towards room and board

  3. and each individual participant is also responsible for purchasing his or her own

  4. airfare to Port Au Prince, Haiti. Medical Student Missions, Inc. provides participants

  5. the opportunity to purchase their airfare at a discounted rate through Medical Student

  6. Missions, Inc.’s corporate travel agent. International airfare ranges from $475 to $1,250,

  7. but with proper planning the cost can typically be held closer to the lower limit of this range.


b) Additionally, Medical Student Missions, Inc. subsidizes the fee for the in

country transportation, translators, and security services that have been

employed to facilitate this program.


c) To further alleviate the financial strain on student participants, this

program will engage in a significant fundraising campaign in hopes of

limiting student cost as much as possible. Medical Student Missions, Inc.

will provide direct guidance and support in this effort to ensure that our

program is fully aware of projects and ideas that other Medical Student

Missions, Inc. volunteers have found to be both effective and efficient in

generating funding. In addition to the benefits mentioned previously, this

coordination with Medical Student Missions, Inc., which is a 501(c)3 nonprofit

corporation (status pending), will allow donors to make tax-exempt

charitable contribution in support of our program.


d) Medical Student Missions, Inc. encourages volunteers to bring small items

for gift exchange with the local medical communities.


I. Program Budget


All funding required for participation in this program will be paid directly

to Medical Student Missions, Inc. prior to departure and, though the

need is not anticipated, in the event that it becomes necessary to transfer

any funds abroad, Medical Student Missions, Inc. will administer this

service through its corporate bank account. Medical Student Missions, Inc.,

has financed three major medical relief programs, including a 21 member

relief mission in August 2010, a 6 member development mission in

November 2010, and has already established adequate funding for

the upcoming December 2010 relief mission. Medical Student Missions,

Inc. operates as a non-profit corporation – 501(c)3 status pending – has

full ability to manage its financial affairs.



J. Program Administration


23. Who will establish program policies, including withdrawal and refund

policies?


i. Program policies will coincide with those established by Medical

Student Missions, Inc. Students will register for this program by filling out the

Medical Student Missions Application available on the

Medical Student Missions, Inc. website –

www.medicalstudentmissions.org

ii. Program fees ($50 per day per participant plus the cost of

airfare per participant) will be collected by this program and

paid directly to Medical Student Missions, Inc., which will be

responsible for paying any program costs incurred abroad.

Additional emergency evacuation insurance for travelers will

be provided to participants through Medical Student

Missions, Inc. if necessary.

iii. All necessary documents, including, but not limited to,

Agreement and Release forms, emergency contact

information, medical history forms, documentation of good

standing with Medical Student

Missions Applications, will be collected and retained by the

coordinator of this program. Copies of these documents will

also be provided to student participants at their request.


24. Who will establish the protocol for behavioral expectations, including

developing a clear definition of behavior that warrants dismissal of a

student from the program?


i. The protocol for behavioral expectations will be developed by the

coordinator of this program to coincide with those of Medical

Student Missions, Inc. and will be reviewed with student

participants upon enrollment in this program.

ii. Any behavior resulting in the loss of the student’s good

standing or found to be in violation of

the Medical Student Missions, Inc. Volunteer Agreement will

result in the dismissal of the student from this program

without refund of any and all fees previously paid.


25. Details about the geographic environment of the program and its relationship

to security issues.


a) This program will take place in Haiti, a country which is currently under a

United States Department of State Travel Warning.


26. Information about the travel advisories or warning of other countries around

the country under the U.S. Department of State’s Travel Warning.


a) Haiti is located on the island of Hispaniola, which it shares with the

Dominican Republic. The Dominican Republic is not currently under a

United States Department of State Travel Warning and the Embassy of

the United States in the Dominican Republic has not released any recent

advisories for travel to the Dominical Republic.


27. The detailed preparation the students will receive during orientation to

prepare them for security-related issues (with detailed examples).


a) Student participants will received detailed instruction and preparation for

security-related issues during at least three separate orientations sessions

organized by Medical Student Missions, Inc.. During these sessions

participants will hear detailed depictions from returned Medical Student

Missions, Inc. volunteers with first-hand knowledge of the security and

logistical procedures employed on Medical Student Missions, Inc. relief

trips. This program will coordinate with Medical Student Missions, Inc. to

provide students with educational preparations for security-related issues,

including, but not limited to, in country transportation, natural disasters,

cultural differences, local community interaction, reaction to any hostile

encounters, and methods of emergency communication.


28. Describe in detail the local support structure on site.


a) Dr. Demika Washington, M.D., on site U.S. faculty resident director of

Medical Student Missions, Inc., will provide extensive support on site. Dr.

Washington spent the past summer working in the hospitals and medical

clinics in Verretes, Haiti – the same site that Medical Student Missions,

Inc. has developed for its upcoming December 2010 relief mission as well

as numerous future missions and the site at which this program will be

taking place. Dr. Washington is fluent in English and Spanish and is

capable of conversing in basic Creole and she is personally acquainted

with international staff at the cholera treatment center. Additinally, Dr.

William Forgey, M.D., Chief Advisor and Co-Founder of Medical Student

Missions, Inc., will be present on site. Any logistical issues encountered in

Haiti by this program or its participants will be managed by the Centre de

formation Leveque through Medical Student Missions, Inc.

Full room and board will be provided by Mr. Vilna Josaphat at The Centre

de Formation Leveque including proper sleeping and living space and at

least two (large breakfast and dinner) meals each day, though leftovers

from the previous night’s dinner will likely be available for a third meal

(lunch). This facility was used by Medical Student Missions, Inc. during its

previously described November 2010 trip and was found to

provided far superior accommodations and food service at half of the cost

of previous facilities utilized by Medical Student Missions, Inc.

This site was chosen and evaluated by a Medical Student Missions, Inc.

team, including Medical Student Missions, Inc. Chief Advisor Dr. William

Forgey, during a November 2010 trip directed specifically at developing

clinical sites for future medical mission trips. Dr. Forgey has extensive

expertise in this area due to prior experiences with this type of site

development. During thirty months of military service in the Vietnam War,

Dr. Forgey was responsible for obtaining housing for psychological

operations personnel in all four combat corps (zones). This career

involved similar issues to those encountered in evaluating the

accommodations and food support, security and appropriateness for

Medical Student Missions, Inc. operations members. The Medical Student

Missions, Inc. onsite liaison trip executed in November 2010 confirmed the

ability of the in-country host and staff to house and transport 30 Medical

Student Missions, Inc. volunteers and reported that the host has an

internal staff of approximately 8 on-site personnel and a total of 60 staff

members within their organization, including field workers. Upon the

assessment of Dr. Forgey, and the rest of the November 2010 team,

Medical Student Missions, Inc. has concluded that the site has adequate

security or operations, both by its geographical location, physical

construction, and number of security personnel employed by its owner and

also the positive relationship between its owner and the local community.

The food service preparation was professional and superior with most

food items coming from the farms operated by the Centre’s owner, Mr.

Vilna Josaphat. Additionally, Medical Student Missions, Inc. has been

granted direct permission from the local governmental unit, Ministere de la

Sante Publique et de la Population, Dr. Dieula Louissant, Directrice

Sanitaire d’Artibonite. This authority allows Medical Student Missions, Inc.

to place its medical students, physicians, nurses, and paramedical staff in

all public hospitals and clinics in the Artibonite district of Haiti.


29. The academic relevance of the program to the students’ degree programs

and/or the importance of the presence of the students to the program itself

(e.g. the impact of their contributions locally).


a) The mission for this program coincides with that of Medical Student

Missions, Inc. for the current project: to provide learning through service to

one of the most underserved areas in the Western Hemisphere, namely a

section of rural Haiti. While there are poor and underserved areas of the

United States in need of technical and volunteer aid as well, this need is of

monumental proportions in Haiti. The current cholera crisis has increased

the need for this program within Haiti, but also provides increased

responsibility and skill advancement opportunities to the service mission

participants.

The purpose of this program is to help to create opportunities for students

to become involved in significant volunteer medical service activities early

on in their development as physicians and professionals. With hope,

these students will then maintain the compassionate characteristics

cultivated by this project and continue to serve those in need through out

their careers and lives. Additionally, by working through Medical Student

Missions, Inc., students will have the opportunity to actively collaborate

with Haitian and international medical personnel to provide services in

public hospitals, neighborhood clinics and cholera treatment centers. This

experience will provide abundant opportunities for students to gain insight

into new and unknown cultures as well as develop life-long friendships

across international lines.

The program site is an absolutely indispensible component of this

program. As participants will be actively working in hospitals and clinics in

the Artibonite district of Haiti, it is absolutely vital that this program

take place onsite. Opportunities for such international cooperation and

integration in a service-based learning experience through an organization

(Medical Student Missions, Inc.) with an established local relationship and

official governmental approval for practice are few and far between. The

learning experiences that this program will provide, as described

previously and below, would not be possible at any other location.

This program will immerse students in geographic specific medical and

cultural issues, will attempt to integrate local customs, and will attempt to

apply current American medical techniques when appropriate. Though

any Indiana University student may participate in this program, we

anticipate that most every student interested in this type of service work

will have a fairly significant interest in a career related at least in some

way to health care. The potential learning outcomes created by this

program in working through Medical Student Missions, Inc. are described

with specificity to medical students, though these same outcomes can apply

to any student. An increased understanding of the global economic gradient

and the cultivation of a compassionate spirit of service can benefit not only

the students participating in this program, but society as a whole. As returned

participants begin to reflect on their experience and explain to others the

countless benefits of such work, more and more individuals will develop an

interest in serving others.

Student participation is the basis of this entire program. It would certainly

be possible to provide services and support to the locally community in

Haiti with non-student volunteers, but the lasting impact this program will

have would not be possible without the inclusion of students. The energy,

excitement and compassion common to student volunteers do not often

exist in non-student volunteers and the charisma provided by student

volunteers is often capable of motivating the entire team to success.

Finally, the focus of this program is educational and thus requires the

participation of student volunteers to be successful. This program serves

to educate student participants in the importance and value of medical

service work and providing support to the less fortunate. The

impressionable nature of students allows them the opportunity to cultivate

a spirit of service through which they will continue to help others

throughout their lives. Though participation in this program may not have

direct relevance to each student’s degree program, the lessons learned

through this experience will most certainly be applicable to any degree

program or career and each student, upon completion of this program, will

be better prepared and further motivated for success in whatever degree

or career path they choose.