registered nurse anesthetists (CRNAs) provide quality anesthesia and care to
patients not only in our country, but also abroad through surgical missions. One
of Taylor Regional Hospital’s finest CRNAs, Jennifer Boils of Campbellsville,
Kentucky, has had the opportunity to deliver care to citizens of Guamiaca,
Honduras on two different occasions. On her first surgical mission trip to
Honduras in June 2014, Boils along with her surgical team performed 87 operations.
In March 2015, they were able to aid citizens through 60 various procedures. Boils
states, “The location that I traveled to is very fortunate in that there is a
24-hour clinic staffed with Honduran physicians. Then, there are multiple
surgical mission teams that travel there throughout the year.” Boils has
provided anesthesia for numerous surgical services in Honduras including ENT,
general, gynecology, and urology. Other specialties have included dentistry,
orthopedics, and ophthalmology.
that the anesthesia methods and techniques she implements in Honduras are
basically the same as in the United States, but with a limited drug supply and
refurbished equipment. General, sedation, and spinal anesthesia are typically
the types of anesthesia used during these surgical cases. However, she has
found that Honduran patients require minimal narcotics and are discharged much
sooner than U.S. patients.
cultural and language barrier is the greatest challenge, there are excellent Honduran
translators available. Yet, Boils states that it is difficult to translate
culture, and these experiences have shown her that people from various cultures
can have very different values. Although Honduran citizens survive with very
little, they are a very happy people and are thankful for the mission team
taking the time to visit them and care for them.
anesthesia and analgesia on these surgical missions comes with great reward. Along
with surgical care, other ministries include evangelism teams, construction
teams, veterinary teams, women’s and children’s ministries, water ministry, and
rice and beans ministry. Boils says, “We are a very evangelism-driven team…The
most rewarding part for me, personally, is sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ
to people for the very first time! Being able to provide physical care is
rewarding, but the main focus is sharing Jesus with the lost!”
Boils and a
team of approximately 48 members are planning on returning to Honduras this
upcoming March. The number of team members ultimately depends on the number of
surgeons and experienced staff available. Surgical mission trips to Honduras
have typically included two to three nurse anesthetists and two student registered
nurse anesthetists. While Boils hopes to someday provide anesthesia care to
patients in other countries, she says for now, this is where she belongs.