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AM I A NURSE?

Learning how to take a blood pressure reading in Ecuador.

I have not now nor have I ever represented myself to be a certified working nurse. The nursing profession is one of the most esteemed pursuits we have today. Perhaps I am partial…my mother taught surgical nursing for many years.

Recently, misleading representations have been made about me. Such representations are untrue, without merit and my statements made have been edited and aired entirely without context.

One of my most favourite charities is Medical Ministries International This organization allows lay persons like myself to travel to the remotest parts of impoverished countries to deliver much needed medical supplies and care to individuals who sometimes have never seen a doctor in their entire lives. Teams are divided into general categories of pharmacy, optometry, dentistry, triage and medical care. These teams are led by accredited doctors and interns. In 2013, my son and I participated in a trip to Ecuador. We were trained in our respective categories assigned and delivered supervised care. My 16 year old son drew the dentistry card (!?) and my role was that of a triage nurse. While he was administering fluoride treatments, I was trained to record heart rates, blood pressure, weight and medical concerns upon check in of the patients. The information I gathered was provided the doctors who administered any and all care and treatment. We were encouraged to dress appropriately prior to our departure. Leaving the Chanel and Celine at home, I arrived in Ecuador with scrubs, a stethoscope and blood pressure cuff.

The retelling of what I thought to be an encouragement to anyone who might want to participate in such a privileged and humbling charitable intention, has been presented in an entirely inappropriate context. On behalf of those responsible, you have my sincere apologies.

Our triage team under the direction of Dr. Suzanna Logacho and Dr. “Joe”

One of the interns demonstrated suturing (on a banana!) for my son and the other teens.

Such a fabulous family experience for my eldest and I.

A co-worker and I taking blood pressure readings.

Winning the trust of two of the paediatric patients.

Dental hygiene education and fluoride application were my son’s job description.

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