Friday, October 18, 2013
Wednesday we set off on the long trip from DTW to BKK for the first global clinical experience in the adult/gero and family nurse practitioner programs at the University of Michigan. Five graduate students. Two faculty. Twenty four hours of travel time. Piece of cake.
Our trip started with a bang. After about five hours on the plane, a women seated a few rows behind the students became difficult to arouse, had a pulse of only 39, and was diaphoretic. The students switched into nurse practitioner mode and got their first glimpse of a true global clinical experience. They had to work with family members and flight attendants to act as translators, had to adjust their treatment plan based on the patient's cultural preferences, and had limited resources to gather data and provide treatments.
Ultimately we will end up in Nakhon Ratchasima working with students and faculty from Suranaree University of Technology. In this pilot experience we will pair a University of Michigan nurse practitioner student with a student from SUT. We will work in dyads to provide health care and community assessments in a smaller town outside of the university.
Today we whet our appetite for Thai food and culture. On four hours of sleep we jumped in and explored the city by public transit and took a cooking class. Tomorrow we load into vans to make the three hour trip north to move into our new "home" for the next two weeks.
We are excited to immerse ourselves in Thai culture and learn as much as we can about the people, healthcare, and ourselves!