A Little Rhode Island in Honduras

A Brown Medical School professor led an effort this summer to open a clinic in Honduras.



Briana Gallo

Dr. Emily Harrison knows something about providing medical care in distant lands. Growing up with a father and grandfather who were surgeons, she lived in Beirut, Pakistan and Oman, returning to Rhode Island in the summers.

But the professor of family medicine at Brown Medical School found her own passion in Central America. This summer, she led a team of doctors from Brown and Wright State University to open a new clinic in Guachipilincito, a town of about 500 people in the countryside of Honduras.

Harrison’s experience in the country dates back to 2006, when she was a fellow at Brown Medical School and worked at the Thundermist Clinic in Woonsocket. She was encouraged by both the clinic, which had a partnership with a non-profit organization called Shoulder to Shoulder, and faculty at Brown Medical School to visit Honduras.

“I really just found my calling when I went down there for the first time,” she says. Earlier this year, Harrison took over as executive director of Shoulder to Shoulder, which now runs 14 clinics in Honduras, including the most recent addition.

Harrison recruited doctors, pharmacists, physical therapists and other medical and non-medical professionals around Rhode Island to help make the new clinic a reality. “There’s a lot of understanding I think in Rhode Island of what we’re trying to do and why it’s important,” Harrison says. She takes groups there twice a year.

The team traveled to Honduras in late July to open the clinic and see patients. People came from Guachipilincito and surrounding towns for care, taking a number on the front porch of the clinic and sometimes waiting most of the day in the courtyard to be seen. Doctors saw about 500 people while they were there. Some had never had medical care before.

The clinic employs Honduran doctors, nurses and support staff and Harrison sees providing and teaching people about health care as a compelling way to reduce poverty. The clinic, which cost $125,000 to start, also provides classes.

“Nutrition and dental education is equally important if not more important than the medical care we deliver,” says Harrison. 


If you’re into this blog wait until you see what’s inside Rhode Island Monthly each month.
Only $1.50  per issue when you sign up for a year. Visit the Subscription Center.


 



 

You might enjoy reading...

Cooking Like Kinnan

A twelve-year-old from Pawtucket cooked his way to the White House with a tasty Middle Eastern-inspired meal.

The Dish: Jamie Oliver at Home in Rhode Island

Jamie Oliver – the internationally known British chef and television personality – launched his home collection in the United States a year ago right here in Rhode Island.

Rhode Island Monthly on The Rhode Show

We discussed the July 2014 issue of Rhode Island Monthly, which is all about seafood.

World Cup Fever Grips Rhode Island

Let us take a tour of some of the countries participating with the help of some local restaurants, shall we?

July 2014 Seafood Issue: Oyster Farm Video and Beach Feast

A Rhode Island shellfish adventure, including an oyster farm tour and clamming and cooking on the beach.

Popular Articles

  1. BYOB: 22 places for good food, booze sans the big check
    The Drinks Are On You! We love going out to eat but then we get the check and — yikes — half of it is for the liquor. That’s why we like places that are BYOB. We can satisfy our craving for good food without going broke.
  2. Cocktail Party
    Craft cocktails are all the rage, and Rhode Island’s scene is getting bigger as fast as you can say, “Hey bartender!” We imbibed far and wide to find some of the best libations, locally made liquors and bar food. It's five o'clock somewhere!
  3. Entertaining with Claudine
    Claudine Pepin and Rollie Wesen throw a backyard dinner party — one for the books — at their home in Barrington.
  4. 2014 Summer Movie Series
    Check out the numerous venues all over the state that offer a variety of movie screenings (most outdoors).
  5. Ava Anderson Non-Toxic Expands Product Line
    The personal care line has rapidly expanded from the original six skin care products to seventy-two Ava items, including home cleaning, baby and pet products.