Working and living in Armenia this summer has been the most unforgettable experience. I have learned so much in such a short amount of time. I was able to spend a few days at Yerevan State University Hospital in the plastic surgery department and tour Nairi Hospital. My internship is at Arabkir Children’s Hospital, and I work with an excellent team of doctors and nurses who have so much experience in pediatric orthopedic surgery. Working in the clinic, rehab center, and operating room has allowed me the opportunity to get to know my patients on another level because we are able to provide continuous care for them through different stages of their illness or injury.
I have worked in many different hospitals back home, but working in hospitals in Armenia has made me realize how good we (American patients) have it. The hospital I’m interning at does not supply the staff with the proper medical equipment they need. Everything they use is a donation to them, which is why a lot of the time the equipment doesn’t work correctly. During surgery, a lot of different metal screws, plates, and rods are used, and they have to reuse these metal pieces on different people because of lack of equipment. In the hospitals I work at back home, if we take something into a patient’s room and it doesn’t get used, we have to throw it away even if the package isn’t open. Working here made me realize how wasteful we can be in the U.S. and how we take so much for granted.
The memories and knowledge I’ve gained in the month that I’ve been in Armenia is life changing. I’m so grateful AYF allowed me to participate in this internship and think every Armenian should experience living in Armenia once in his/her life.