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Wayne State medical students to discuss planned mission to Haiti

January 14, 2010

A group of about 20 students from the Wayne State University School of Medicine chapter of the World Health Student Organization (WHSO) says a planned medical mission to Haiti in February has become even more critical following the massive earthquake that devastated the impoverished island nation.

The group will meet today at 3:30 p.m. in the Scott Hall cafeteria, 540 Canfield, to discuss ramping up collection efforts and the earthquake's potential implications on the trip, which is planned for Feb. 25 - March 7. The student-run organization plans to take drugs, medical equipment and health care to Haiti.

"As soon the students heard about the earthquake you would have thought they would have been concerned about still going on the trip, but the reaction was the total opposite," says Rosita Iordanova, a second-year medical student. "The students are even more motivated to go to Haiti and make a difference in people's lives."

The nonprofit WHSO is seeking donations of medications, vitamins, condoms, pregnancy test kits, blood pressure cuffs and blood sugar measuring kits. Tax-deductible monetary donations will assist the group in purchasing additional supplies and equipment, and can be made at http://www.waynewhso.org/page31/page31.html.

This school year, WHSO student groups from the School of Medicine will also travel to Belize (Feb. 28-March 7), Costa Rica (Feb. 25-March 7) and Ecuador (March 20-28). A group went to Nicaragua in December.

About 90 students in all will take part in the medical missions. The trips are typically staffed by 20 first- and second-year students, two fourth-year students and a physician.

The groups customarily remain on the missions for seven to 10 days.

The WHSO has steadily increased in membership since its formation four years ago, and is now one of the largest student organizations at the School of Medicine.

"These students, and the faculty who assist them in these trips, deserve a tremendous amount of admiration for these missions," says Valerie Parisi, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A., interim dean of the School of Medicine. "They bring much-needed care to remote villages and towns, and in return they get a real education into how a substantial segment of the world's population lives without adequate health care. I hope that everyone who can will contribute to these missions."

  • Contact: Matt Lockwood
  • Voice: 313-577-9098
  • Email: mlockwood@wayne.edu
  • Fax: 313-577-4459
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