Howard University Pre-Medical Student Wins the Dean H.T. Sampson Travel Scholarship to Study Critical Care Medicine in Africa

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A Howard University Pre-Medical student has been awarded a prestigious international travel award. The award will be used to learn how African health care systems that are overwhelmed with the provision of basic medical needs for large populations deal with the need to provide critical medical care to individuals who need short term intensive care in order to survive. The winning student, Miss Kimberly Bunting will accompany a research and education team from Johns Hopkins Hospital and the Society of Critical Care Medicine.

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Johns Hopkins Medicine

An otherwise healthy child needs a night on a ventilator to survive a severe asthma attack. A middle age civil engineer can’t breath because of a treatable pneumonia. A mother of four is having life-threatening high blood pressure and eclamptic seizures as a complication of her pregnancy. All of these people potentially have years of quality life and valuable productivity in their future, but none of these examples will survive without a few days in a special hospital unit that is called an intensive care unit (ICU).

In the past, even short term care of the above examples would be considered an expense more significant than the lost life and productivity of non-survival. However such an attitude places everyone from cream of the crop students to scientists, professors and politicians a mere infection, complex surgery or traffic accident from death.

This Spring Kimberly Bunting, a Howard University Senior will be awarded the 2011 Dean H.T. Sampson Travel Scholarship. The scholarship is named after the late Dean Henry Thomas Sampson of Jackson State University, whose relentless devotion to education has been acknowledged by the naming of the Jackson State University library in his honor.

The Dean H.T. Sampson Travel Scholarship will provide Bunting with the opportunity to be a part of an international effort to improve health care opportunities for people living on the African continent. Bunting will join a team of critical care experts from Johns Hopkins Hospital, the Society of Critical Care Medicine and Doctors for United Medical Missions (DrUMM) as they embark on a critical care medicine improvement intervention project. It is expected that as a result of this exposure Bunting will be inspired to utilize her emerging public health skills to bring awareness and solutions to the unnecessary deaths that occur in Africa.

This project includes an assessment of the resources and capabilities of intensive care units (ICUs) in Ghana, two critical care medicine workshops for nurses and two Society of Critical Care Medicine critical care refresher courses (Fundamental Critical Care Support-FCCS) courses for physicians and nurses.

The mentoring and introduction of students to the status of anesthesia related medical issues in Africa is important in producing leaders who will continue to address this significant healthcare disparity. After a stiff competition between an academically competitive field of students, Doctors for United Medical Missions, Inc. (DrUMM) has granted Bachelors of Science candidate Kimberly Bunting the Dean H.T. Sampson Travel Scholarship.

This year’s scholarship was provided by generous donations from the descendants of Dean H.T. Sampson and the Iota Nu Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Dean H.T. Sampson being an early member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.

About DrUMM: Doctors for United Medical Missions (DrUMM) is a non-profit organization which is dedicated to improving health opportunities in developing countries by working with health care providers in those countries.

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John Sampson
Doctors for United Medical Missions
(410) 688-0691
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