Welcome to our final blog post from Courtney and Abbie. Over the past week we have had the privilege to learn about and interact with vulnerable populations in our backyard of Atlanta. We began on Monday by teaming up with Catholic Charities Atlanta to learn about the refugee resettlement process in the United States. We went to Clarkston to move in furniture and set up an apartment for an Eritrean single mother and her five children. On Tuesday, we went to Grady’s dialysis clinic for immigrants with end-stage kidney disease. We were able to speak with patients about their life stories, current medical condition and educate them about their disease and how to manage it. On Wednesday, we went to Clarkston Community Health Center to do patient education on colorectal screenings, help organize the clinic and price out traditional grocery lists for refugee families to get a glimpse into their financial situation. On Thursday, we went back to the dialysis clinic at Grady to learn more about the dialysis process and update patient information packets so they can better understand their disease. On our last day, we got to tour and prepare lunch at Good Samaritan Health Center for the homeless population in Atlanta.
Abbie’s favorite part of the entire immersion was interacting with patients, gathering histories, doing a grocery store assessment and updating new patient education packets. Courtney’s favorite part of the entire immersion was exploring different parts of Atlanta and interacting with populations with interesting stories and backgrounds.
Facts our group found most interesting/What our group enjoyed doing:
- Chronic Kidney Disease of unknown etiology(CKDu) is hypothesized to be the first chronic disease that could be caused by climate change
- Learning the importance of dialysis and its process
- How to work with interpreter services while still engaging with patients
- Showing compassion to all because you never know what someone has gone through
- Importance of establishing a therapeutic relationship
- Health Care services available to the underserved population
- Touring Good Samaritan Health Center and seeing all the resources they offer from their own food gardens to their fitness classes
- The process of interviewing patients in general or for a research project
- Hearing the life stories from the patients
- Learning the history behind Ponce de Leon and how it was the street that was the divide for segregation
That’s a wrap from week 1! Thank you to our clinical instructors and clinical partners we worked with throughout the week! Stay tuned to read stories from our week 2 classmates!