Guyanese Students Visit MTSA Campus

MTSA welcomed seven Guyanese students enrolled in the nurse anesthesia program at Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) for a unique campus visit in August. MTSA’s connection with the program stems from several mission trips led by MTSA faculty and administration over the past two years.

Photo caption: MTSA welcomed Guyanese student nurse anesthetists (pictured in scrubs) for a week of workshops and classes. They were accompanied by Alexandra Harvey (right), MD, Program Director, Anesthesia Training, and Director of Medical Education at Georgetown Public Hospital Corp.

The students were accompanied by Alexandra Harvey, MD, Program Director, Anesthesia Training, and Director of Medical Education at GPHC. She and the students participated in classes and a regional cadaveric workshop as well as received a tour of Nashville.

“This visit has really opened the students’ minds and vision of what is possible for them in the field of nurse anesthesia,” Harvey said. “Having this relationship with MTSA allows the students to connect with people who are doing this type of work daily. It improves their morale, and they see that they’re part of a larger community of CRNAs, which we have in Guyana but not nearly on this scale.”

Prior to the students’ arrival on-campus, they had already become familiar with MTSA through the School’s mission efforts. Last year a team that included MTSA students traveled to Guyana to teach classes, run simulations and conduct licensing board review. Lectures were delivered on iPads that were provided through funds raised at recent events such as the Mission & Awards Gala, Golf Classic and Sporting Clay Tournament.

Harvey sees the role of MTSA as integral to the students’ continued growth: “Having PowerPoint materials and iPads for each of the students was a big step up. It eliminated any disparities between the students and their ability to access course material. Prior to that, we only had books handed down from students who gave them back at the end of the program. So now we don’t have to supplement any content because it’s all current and standardized across the board.

“Our trip here to MTSA has been wonderful. I’m happy to see the students thinking through the ways their education will have an impact back home, especially in more remote places in the interior where there aren’t many CRNAs. It’s really been a godsend because it’s helping our program become stronger,” Harvey said.

Harvey added that she hopes to continue working with MTSA administrators and faculty to build more structured training for nurse anesthetists and eventually for the nurse anesthesia program to be offered at a degree level accredited by the University of Guyana. To that end, she said one of her next steps will be a full curriculum review.

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