During his recent visit to Thomazeau, Haiti, College of Pharmacy Dean Phil Johnston visited villages with LiveBeyond workers and a Belmont delegation to aid and dispense medications to a woman in postpartum, a father with high blood pressure, a small boy with worms and a man with a hip injury. The most powerful experience of them all was when a man who received medical attention sang a Christian hymn in Creole as his Voodoo-practicing neighbors gathered around and listened.
“It was like watching a Bible story about caring for the least of these,” Johnston said.
He, along with College of Health Sciences & Nursing Dean Cathy Taylor and Nursing Assistant Professor Robin Cobb, visited LiveBeyond’s base in Haiti last week to identify areas of student mission participation and to flush out unique partnerships between the University and the nonprofit organization that would allow Belmont students to provide medical and educational resources as well as business development to the ailing Caribbean country. Founded by retired trauma surgeon David Vanderpool, LiveBeyond moved its headquarters in May into Belmont’s Facilities Management Services building at the corner of 15th and Delmar avenues. The organization’s 64-acre Haitian base encompasses medical care, nutrition, maternal health, orphan care, education development, community development and infrastructure, agriculture and demonstration farms, clean water projects and community outreach visits to those with special needs and disabilities in a region 25 miles northeast of Port Au Prince, Haiti.
“We certainly were able to get a great flavor for the compound and the vision for what is there now and the vision for what is planned,” said Taylor, who co-hosted a convocation-credit forum to share more about the team’s experiences at noon Feb. 19 in McWhorter Hall room 114. (more…)
Belmont and Lipscomb pharmacy students visited Hume Fogg High School last week to educate students on drug abuse through the Generation Rx program, which educates youth to the epidemic of prescription drug abuse and addiction occurring in the United States.
Both universities’ American Pharmacists Association (APhA) chapters presented on the important issue. The event featured a video highlighting the use of prescription drugs by teenagers and responses by their families as well as recent statistics and addictive trends that are occurring among high school students. Students also participated in a game show competition emphasizing key topics presented.
“The event was a tremendous success. The students at Hume Fogg were very engaged, and it was fun to see the two colleges come together and work so well on such an important issue,” College of Pharmacy Assistant Dean of Student Affairs Dr. Kelley Kiningham said. “Our goal is to have this outreach effort grow across Nashville and surrounding counties. Raising awareness to this presentation provided by our APhA students will hopefully bring other middle/high schools to the table to allow us to promote awareness and education related to prescription drug abuse among those populations.”
An 11-member team from Belmont’s College of Pharmacy is traveling to Guatemala twice this summer to provide aid and expertise to the Moore Pediatric Surgery Center (MPSC). Open since March 2011, more than 800 needy children have received free life-altering surgical care from MPSC.
The Belmont team just returned from its first trip July 8-13 in which it teamed with MPSC to implement the hospital’s first computerized inventory system. During the week-long mission, the seven-person team worked with MPSC leadership to finalize the inventory categorization model and to set coding conventions. In addition, the team purchased and implemented inventory management software, documented and coded more than 750 individual items, created and affixed barcodes to all inventory and determined IT needs to link the new system across multiple computer stations.
This inventory system will help to ensure patient safety, assist in MPSC planning and enable donors to better target needed supplies. Follow the Belmont’s team’s ongoing updates on its Tumblr site or on Facebook.
A second team will return to Guatemala Aug. 4-8 to continue this medical mission work. Participants on the two trips include faculty members Drs. Eric Hobson and Angela Hagan as well as students Chris Kepinski, Rebecca Yost, Leah Dickerson, Quyen Nguyen, Henry Lim, Erin Todd, Kandice Squires and Allison Sweat.
Belmont University’s Office of Advancement recently established the Clayton McWhorter Society, a giving society intended to further the work of Belmont’s health science programs. The new group, which held its inaugural membership lunch on May 2, is named in honor of long-time Belmont supporter Clayton McWhorter and will directly benefit the College of Health Sciences & Nursing, the College of Pharmacy and the new MBA for Healthcare Professionals.
Clayton McWhorter’s leadership and role in the development of healthcare industry giants HealthTrust, Inc. and HCA have made a strong impression in the field of healthcare. In 1996, Clayton, his son Stuart, and a close business friend created the venture capital firm Clayton Associates, which quickly evolved into a hub of strategic business development activities related to new firms in healthcare, technology and diversified services.
His relationship with the University began in the late ’80s through an invitation from Jack Massey “to get involved with Belmont,” and 25 years later, Clayton McWhorter continues his generous response to Massey’s challenge through his support of a variety of programs and initiatives.
Belmont Vice President for University Advancement Dr. Bo Thomas said, “While Clayton’s many achievements are based on sound business principles and bone-deep ethical standards, in the end it is his commitment to making a difference in the lives of others and giving back to the community that has sealed his enduring success and legacy. Belmont University counts itself fortunate to be among the many who have benefited from Clayton’s generous spirit and friendship. Through the McWhorter Society, Clayton is now challenging others to ‘to get involved with Belmont’ just as Jack Massey encouraged him to do years ago.”
The Memorial Foundation has awarded Belmont University $300,000 to upgrade high-fidelity simulation equipment, support interprofessional training in the College of Health Sciences & Nursing and fund a post-graduate Healthcare Simulation Fellowship. Belmont has appointed Dr. Gwenn Randall as the college’s first fellow.
“We are grateful to the Memorial Foundation for this generous gift that will enable us to markedly increase the impact of our clinical simulation program. In addition to creating exciting new clinical experiences for both students and community providers, with this funding we will create new ways of educating future leaders in this emerging field,” said College of Health Sciences & Nursing Dean Cathy R. Taylor.
The University’s advanced patient simulators allow students to experience the health care profession’s daily challenges in a controlled environment. Computerized mannequins exhibit real patient symptoms and respond accordingly to treatment provided by caregivers, based on programmed scenarios. The use of simulation allows individuals preparing for health care professions to practice treatments and learn technique through simulation before treating actual patients. The University used a portion of the Memorial Foundation grant to purchase a highly specialized obstetrical mannequin that will be used to train nursing students and community partners to respond to high risk obstetric emergencies.
“A program in health care professional training in simulation meets a need in the industry, appeals to professionals who want a unique and growing career and is attractive to teaching institutions who want to become involved or expand simulation,” said Dr. Beth Hallmark, director of simulation. (more…)