DMU students to spend break providing health care in Honduras

February 24, 2012 —

Thirty-three Des Moines University students are skipping the traditional spring break hot spots for a week in Honduras. Instead of spending their time off in the sun or on the slopes, students from all three DMU colleges will be addressing the health care needs of the less fortunate March 17-25.

This is the second year in a row that Des Moines University students, faculty and alumni are making the journey to Honduras. New this year is an emphasis on bringing together students and professionals from a variety of medical backgrounds.

The group is comprised of representatives from seven of DMU’s nine degree programs, including osteopathic medicine, physician assistant, podiatric medicine, physical therapy, biomedical sciences, health care administration and public health. They will be joined by residents and faculty from the Mercy Family Residency Program at Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines as well as students and faculty from the Drake University College of Pharmacy.

“This kind of service trip offers a great opportunity for students to not only give back to developing countries, but also become global citizens and learn from each other as part of their interprofessional education,” said Yogesh Shah, M.D., associate dean of global affairs at DMU.

Des Moines University’s global health department organized the experience, its eighth annual medical service trip. DMU and Drake University are members of the Heartland Global Health Consortium, a group of Iowa colleges and universities that collaborates to offer international health learning experiences for their students.

If the public is able to help, these items are needed:

  • Body soap
  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrushes
  • Band-Aids
  • Antibiotic creams
  • Tylenol, aspirin and Motrin
  • Multi-vitamins

Donations can be dropped off at the Des Moines University Global Health office, Academic Center, 3440 Grand Avenue, from 8 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Thursday. For more information about how you can help, contact Chris Catrenich.


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Des Moines University (DMU) is the only private medical school in Iowa, offering graduate-level, professional degree programs in osteopathic medicine, podiatric medicine, physical therapy, physician assistant studies, biomedical sciences, anatomy, health care administration and public health. Founded in 1898, the institution offers superior academics in a collaborative environment. DMU students' pass rate on national examinations and board certifications is consistently higher than the national average and the rates at similar institutions.


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