Kit Elliot, LPN Instructor at Pima Medical Institute is Human First Aid Kit

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Newton’s third law of motion states that,” for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction” The recent hurricane in New Orleans and Albuquerque’s instructor, Kit Elliott are representative of this law. Kit, an LPN of 13 years who has served as the evening back office Medical Assistant instructor at Pima Medical Institute, 2201 San Pedro, NE, Bldg3, Suite 100 in Albuquerque, has proven to be her own first aid kit for disaster relief. In addition to her duties at PMI, she has helped in numerous disasters and volunteers with First Choice Community Health Clinics in Albuquerque.

Newton’s third law of motion states that,” for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction” The recent hurricane in New Orleans and Albuquerque’s instructor, Kit Elliott are representative of this law.

Kit, an LPN of 13 years who has served as the evening back office Medical Assistant instructor at Pima Medical Institute, 2201 San Pedro, NE, Bldg3, Suite 100 in Albuquerque, has proven to be her own first aid kit for disaster relief. In addition to her duties at PMI, she has helped in numerous disasters and volunteers with First Choice Community Health Clinics in Albuquerque.

Kit has been a member of the Red Cross since 1973 and has been a member of the national Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) since 1992. Since 1995 Kit has responded to 17 national and countless local and state-wide disasters.

Kit’s most recent DMAT voluntary deployment was to Louisiana in response to hurricane Katrina. There she worked with evacuees attending to their healthcare needs. Kit shared some of the same hardships imposed upon the displaced; sleepless nights in a makeshift shelter, living on MREs and bottled water, wearing the same clothes for days, and sharing the appreciation of a basin of water with which to clean a grateful face while listening to talk of desperation or, in many cases, hope.

Going from the Superdome to the field hospital in Baton Rouge Kit saw the outpouring of generosity and compassion from the community; food, clothing, mattresses, people helping people. As a result of this experience, Kit has a better appreciation of life’s simple joys such as helping another person eat or feel clean when they were too helpless to do so for themselves.

Upon returning to Albuquerque, Kit also experienced a sense of healing and hope. As a Red Cross nurse, she has spent the last three weeks helping displaced evacuees with the following: finding a place to live, accessing medical care, obtaining groceries and clothing.

“I have once again been reminded that no matter how much money flows to national organizations, we depend on local finances, people and community effort to help those less fortunate to find purpose and support,” said Kit.

At the end of each day she returns to the PMI Medical Assistant evening class and shares with her students her experiences and lessons learned through her volunteer work in hopes that they too will find fulfillment in giving of oneself as a health care professional.

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Sally Marks
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