Patiently, Project HOPE volunteer nurse, Anne Borden, listens as an elderly lady with diabetes talks about her life.
then talks with her
, giving her
advice on how to better control her
disease within her
environment in rural Central America.
will repeat this scene, over and over again, listening to and teaching each individual patient to ensure all their questions are answered and that they understand their chronic diseases.
"It is very gratifying.
There is a lot of individual counseling and teaching and people are very appreciative of anything you do.
We get the opportunity to teach people the basic fundamentals of how to manage their chronic diseases that they are going to have all their lives," Anne
continues, meeting with each patient, one-on-one, helping them understand hypertension, diabetes, the risk factor for stroke and the importance of following through on medications and more.
Anne first worked with Project HOPE when her employer, Massachusetts General Hospital, sent a team of volunteers to work with HOPE in Haiti following the devastating earthquake.
says that volunteering after the earthquake really made her
understand how connected every one really is.
second volunteer mission with HOPE
in Nicaragua and Panama is cementing that belief.
"It is interesting that the people in these Central American countries have the same health concerns as we do in the United States," she
"They have the same basic health problems, the same concerns, such as how they get their meds or how are you going to help them get their quality of life back."
One patient in particular that sticks out in her
mind is an older Nicaraguan woman, probably about 92.
was very healthy, and had her
blood pressure checked.
said that she
represented all the Nicaraguans who couldn't get out of their houses.
was very graceful, very well spoken and sweet," Anne
In addition to working with patients, Anne is also serving as HOPE's Operations Officer and Chief Nursing Officer during this portion of the Continuing Promise 2010 eight-country mission.
leadership role makes her
appreciate even more the complexity and scale of this annual humanitarian assistance and health education mission.
really has the infrastructure to pull off such a large mission that helps so many people," she