Sunday, June 28, 2015

Post-Mission Perspective from a Resident Podiatrist

Anna Moore joined the IEP team for the 2015 mission as one of the resident surgeons. Here's her perspective on the experience in Vietnam.

Anna Moore, DPM, at work in the operating room.
Two months ago, I joined the IEP team on the trip of a lifetime to Can Tho, Vietnam. 

IEP facilitates the connection between people who are unable to get the care they need with the hospital and doctors who can provide this to them. The two wonderful weeks I spent working as a resident surgeon with the IEP team and interacting with and caring for the Vietnamese people left me overwhelmed with feelings of awe and gratitude.

It is easy to get caught up in the world right in front of our eyes, but my time in Vietnam broadened my perspective and has made me fall in love with my profession all over again. I gained both a greater appreciation for the world of medicine and for the diversity of patients. 

Many of the patients I worked with have made me a better person simply for having met them. The strength with which these people pursue their lives and the happiness they carry with them despite immense struggles is inspiring. During post-operative rounds, family members would often run up to us offering their gratitude. Patients would be in tears at the realization that this is the beginning of a new life for them; a new improved way of living that could get them back to school or back to work or better provide for their family. Having contributed to these lives in such a powerful way is surreal!

I have walked away from this medical mission with friendships that will last a lifetime and memories that will linger and provide me a better outlook on the life I live, both professionally and personally. 

To the patients we helped and the Vietnamese doctors who taught me new things, I am forever grateful. Thank you IEP. And thank you Vietnam.

The local medical team never ceased to be amused by
Dr. Moore's height and blonde hair. :-)

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