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icon Medical Mission to Rural Romania March 28-April 4, 2009
   
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INTRODUCTION
Tulane Outreach to Romania (TOR) is a Tulane University School of Medicine student organization. Its mission is to improve the health care and educational opportunities in rural Romania and to develop partnerships between New Orleans and rural Romania. During March 28th and April 4th 2009, TOR in conjunction with the Daniel Murariu Foundation will lead a specialty-oriented medical mission to three villages in Iasi County, northeastern Romania. The team will be composed of medical doctors and medical students from the United States and Romania. This is the second such medical mission. For more information, photographs and news clip from Romanian Public Television coverage, please visit www.fdm.ro.

BACKGROUND
This medical mission is organized by TOR members and the Daniel Murariu Foundation. TOR was started in 2007 as an independent organization within the School of Medicine and is open to all students interested in making a change in Romania. TOR seeks to bridge the gap between Tulane University medical students and medical needs and opportunities in Romania. This experience benefits rural Romanian people as well as Tulane and Romanian medical students and physicians through direct care and cultural exchange. Furthermore, this experience is an excellent training ground for leadership and service in international medicine.

The Daniel Murariu Foundation is a Non-Governmental Organization founded in 2006 to provide medical and educational resources to poor rural areas of Romania. These goals are achieved through direct provision of OB/GYN, Cardiology and Pediatric care in rural Romania, provision of scholarships for rural Romanian children to attend high school, and public health research.

Members of the US team include:

  • Conrad, Tracy, D.O- Tulane Medicine/Pediatrics Residency Director
  • Fotino, Domnica, M.D., M.P.H. - Tulane Internal Medicine Staff
  • Murariu, Daniel, M.D., M.P.H. – General Surgery Resident, University of Hawaii
  • Niyogi, Anjali, M.D., M.P.H. – Tulane Internal Medicine Staff
  • Yuri Simani, M.D.- Obstretics/Gynecology Chief Resident
  • Younger, Mary, M.D. – Tulane Pediatrics Junior Staff

  • Brett, Sarah
  • Chen, Dan
  • Cody, Rowan
  • Cowell, Anne
  • Dietz, Michael
  • Jespersen, Megan
  • Higgins, Lindsay
  • Janani, Crystal
  • Luchansky Grey, Carson
  • McLain, Carla
  • Mears, Bruce
  • Nice, Johanna
  • Nolen, Renee
  • Polchinski, Jason
  • Shiao, Renee
  • Thakur, Akanksha
  • Treharne, Gregory
  • Turner, Rene

Complete list of members of the Romanian team will be posted in the near future, but thus far include:

  • Bodi, Svetlana, M.D.
  • Creanga, Constantin, M.D.
  • Mihaescu, Cipriana, Ph.D. candidate

  • Ailene, Andrea
  • Bumbu, Anisoara
  • Ciuntu, Bogdan
  • Dumitroaia, Ancuta
  • Gaina, Ioana
  • Ghitun, Valentin (Alin)
  • Luca, Andrei
  • Nistor, Andrei
  • Stancu, Iris
  • Tarasi, Maria
  • Volocaru, Ioana

LOCATION & ACTIVITIES
The medical mission to Romania will take place in and around the villages of Prisacani, Moreni, Macaresti, Comarna, Iasi County on Saturday through Monday, March 28-30 and Wednesday, April 1. We intend to set up three teams composed equally of American and Romanian members. Furthermore, on Tuesday, March 31st we will see elderly that are taken care of by the Casa Providentei and serve the clinic run by Asociatia Calea Bucuriei aimed at providing free medical care to an inner city gypsy community.

The clinics will be free and open to the local population. Previous missions have demonstrated great need for specialty care. We are preparing for a high patient volume. Our focus is specialty consultations in obstetrics/gynecology, pediatrics, and cardiology. This is a hands-on learning experience for students- they will assist the physicians and perform tests such as electrocardiograms, abdominal, pelvic and pregnancy ultrasounds, urinalyses, and Papanicolau smears.

TOR will have an immediate impact on the health and lives of the patients through direct care discussed above. Education and public health are equally important to our mission. We will work to improve care year round by identifying barriers to care, partnering with and supporting local primary care doctors. We will screen for chronic diseases and cancers. We will provide preventative care for women through annual PAP smear tests; these are not widely available and the prevalence of uterine cancers is reportedly high. We will provide continuing education specialty training for primary care physicians on the topics of their choice given by the participating physicians.

We will record data on the patients seen, so we may draw some epidemiologic conclusions regarding the prevalence of diseases in the villages visited with the possibility of presenting the information at conferences or in journals. To ensure continuity between our efforts and patient’s primary care provider we will translate the Assessment and Plan for each patient into Romanian to give to their primary care doctor.

The students in the masters of public health will conduct public health campaigns in the area schools, as well for the patients in the waiting rooms. This will be in conjunction with the local Public Health Authority. Their activity will be overseen by Cipriana Mihaescu, Director of Health Services Management Centre within the National School of Public Health and Health Management, Bucharest, Romania.

Part of the last few days of the mission will be spent touring several of the major hospitals in Iasi. We hope to gain better insight into how typical Romanian hospitals are run.

Daily discussions, exchange of opinions and perceptions, and collaborative clinical care will facilitate a greater understanding and exchange between the participating medical professionals. It is our goal that this project becomes well established in the Tulane and Romanian communities. Furthermore, we hope that this experience serves as a model and training ground to improve medical care and education in Romania and around the world!

Tentative Itinerary for TOR Medical Mission 2009
March 26 - April 4, 2009

  • Thursday: -US participants leave New Orleans
  • Friday: -US participants arrive in Iasi
  • Sat-Mon: -8 AM-12 PM- work in clinics in Prisacani, Macaresti, Comarna (TBD teams and which days)
    - 12 PM and 1 PM break
    - 1 PM-last patient- work
    - 8-9 dinner
    - 9-9.30 PM daily discussion
  • Tue: -8 AM-12 PM- see patients in the monastery we are hosted
    -12 PM- 1 PM – lunch
    - 1 PM- 6 PM- Clinic in Iasi covering underserved Gypsy minorities run by Asociatia Calea Bucuriei
  • Wed: -8 AM-12 PM- work in clinics in Prisacani, Macaresti, Comarna (TBD teams and which days)
    -12 PM and 1 PM break
    - 1 PM-last patient- work
    - 7 PM- group dinner
  • Thur-Fri: -Visit Bucovina area of Romania, including several UNESCO sites
  • Sat: -US participants leave for the US

PARTNERSHIPS & RESOURCES
The medical mission will be organized in Romania by the Daniel Murariu Foundation. The US participants are organized by Tulane Outreach to Romania of Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana.

The participating physicians of the US team will be drawn from the Tulane University School of Medicine of New Orleans, LA and University of Hawaii John A. Burns School of Medicine. The students are members of Tulane Outreach to Romania; 11 are enrolled in the Tulane University School of Medicine and 4 are enrolled in the Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Diseases. Romanian medical students will be drawn from the Grigore T. Popa University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Iasi. Participating Romanian physicians are from Bucharest and Iasi.

Ms. Carson Grey will be the group’s official photographer and will also do a documentary of the medical mission. Mr. Bruce Meurs is a volunteer and will help out as needed.

General Electric (www.ge.com) has donated an electrocardiogram machine to the Daniel Murariu Foundation for use during medical missions. The Marius Nasta Institute of Pulmonary will provide spirometry testing equipment. Medicines will be provided by Medical Assistance Programs (www.map.org) and sponsored by Schering-Plough (www.schering-plough.com). The International Hospital for Children (www.theihc.org) will provide us with basic medical supplies and anti-hypertensive medications. Hope for Others (www.hopeforothers.org) and Marriott Hotels (www.marriott.com) will provide 2,000 toothbrushes and toothpaste. Lions Club of Arlington, VA will provide 500 glasses to be distributed to those needing eyewear; Tulane Hospital will lend Snell Charts and a pair of ophthalmologic eyeglasses to determine the dioptry of the patients.

Clinic space will be provided by local authorities, collaborating family physicians and Asociatia Calea Bucuriei.

The US team and out of town Romanian participants will be housed at the Casa Providentiala.

Vanity t-shirts with information about the medical mission are provided by Massimo and the Daniel Murariu Foundation.

We will provide medical skills and basic examination tools and supplies, such as blood pressure cuffs, stethoscopes, rubbing alcohol, compression gauzes, etc.

CONCLUSION
Tulane physicians and students will partner with Romanian colleagues to provide OB/GYN, Cardiology and Pediatric care. Our goals are to establish strong relationships between Tulane and Romanian medical communities and to provide outstanding care during the mission. We will also and work to improve care year-round. This experience will benefit the rural Romanian communities through service, Tulane and Romanian students and physicians through partnership and cultural exchange.

We thank you for your interest and look forward to your involvement!

For tv video please click HERE.


Health Campaingns:  Visit to Sculeni |  Medical mission |  Blood Drive
Education: Christmas Celebration Party |  Prisacani School
Scholarships:  Alexandru Ignat Memorial |  Toader Prisacaru Memorial |  Dumitru Bahrim Memorial
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