Organized by Kala Hurst, Biomed ’18, (DO '22), and Jotrineesha Walton, Biomed ’18,
last spring, the doctor of osteopathic medicine (DO), pharmacy and biomedical sciences students were supervised on the one week mission trip by a dermatologist and a registered
nurse through Caribbean Lifetime Missions, an agency that has hosted short-term mission
teams since 1991.
According to Joseph Monplaisir (PharmD ’20), who served as the team photographer,
the students set up stations at local churches in six remote villages. Many of the
villagers walked miles to come for health checkups. The volunteer team would stay
each day until the last villagers were checked.
The students conducted screenings for Hepatitis C, blood sugar and blood pressure,
as well as counseled patients about such health habits as wearing sunglasses and avoiding
salty foods. In addition, they helped conduct sexual health seminars to educate the
villagers about their risks and prevention options. They were able to provide over-the-counter
medications to the villagers, and the team’s dermatologist wrote prescriptions which,
Monplaisir said, would likely go unfilled because the patients couldn’t afford them.
He said he saw cases of chicken pox, scabies and many other illnesses for the first
With parents originally from Haiti and familiarity with the Creole language, Monplaisir,
along with Rebecca Boucard (Biomed ’19), served as translators for the team.
“It was very impactful to see people living with less and they were still happy. That’s
what stood out to me,” Monplaisir said. “These people had literally nothing, not even
running water or electricity, and they had a smile on their faces. Some had to walk
almost two miles to get to the local water well,” he added. “I have no excuse to be
upset about anything. It gave me perspective.”
Aside from Hurst, Walton, Monplaisir and Boucard, students who participated in the
mission trip included: Moriah Newman, Biomed ’18; Krystle Richmond, Biomed ’18; Obianuju
Nwamah (DO ’21); Kristi Anderson (DO '21); Teyaijah Givens, Biomed ’18; Jasmine Beasley,
Biomed ’18; Shayla Lackey, Biomed ’18; Porshaye Watkins (Biomed ’19); Cayla Buck (Biomed
’19); Eboni Carroll, Biomed ’18; Briana Davis (Biomed ’19); Amber Douglass (Biomed
’19); Ashley Douglass (PharmD ’21); Tiffanii Smith (Biomed ’19); Adenike Bademosi
(Biomed '19); and Karlene Davis, Biomed ’18. Dr. Tiffany Clay served as the team physician
and Brunetta Martin, RN, was the team nurse.
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated
to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia
College of Osteopathic Medicine, a premier osteopathic medical school with a storied
history. PCOM Georgia offers doctoral degrees in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, and
physical therapy and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, medical laboratory science,
and physician assistant studies. Emphasizing "a whole person approach to care," PCOM
Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service
to the wider community. The campus is also home to the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center,
an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment.
For more information, visit pcom.edu/georgia or call 678-225-7500.
For more information, contact: Barbara Myers Senior Public Relations Manager Email: BarbaraMy@pcom.edu Office: 678-225-7532 | Cell: