By Eunice Jeong
We know that our Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group physicians provide exceptional care and service to our members here in the region. But what you might not know is that some of them have had opportunities to provide care and serve those in need well beyond the Mid-Atlantic region, in other parts of the world! Over the next few weeks, we will feature a few of these amazing stories. We encourage you to learn about how these physicians are helping to improve the health of not only the communities we serve, but also communities around the globe.
Eddye Bullock, MD, Internal Medicine, Kaiser Permanente Woodlawn Medical Center
Eddye Bullock, MD, is a MAPMG internist at Kaiser Permanente Woodlawn Medical Center. This May, she got the special opportunity to go on a once-in-a-lifetime medical mission trip to Ghana with the Ghana Healthcare Volunteers of Georgia. During her time abroad, the mission team temporarily located outside a small hospital in Mankranso, a small town in an agricultural region of the country. The volunteers provided basic primary care and urgent care services to more than 1,600 patients during a two-week period.
Dr. Bullock describes the unique services and population served during those weeks: “We provided services for infants to adults … most of the people in the town are hardworking farmers, so we saw a lot of back and joint pain … there were also cases of malaria, pneumonia, vitamin deficiency, diabetes, and hypertension.” Along with treating a variety of different needs and ages, Dr. Bullock also noted that the process was challenging at times because the health care system in that part of the country was relatively underdeveloped with a lack of coordinated resources. The local hospital did not include many diagnostic services such as imaging, and the nearest large teaching hospital was over an hour away. This sometimes interfered with the efficiency of the care delivery process.
Overall, Dr. Bullock found the mission trip extremely meaningful and eye-opening. Despite differences in geography, community, and health care systems, she felt a connection to many of the patients served and their values. This opportunity was especially valuable to her since this trip was her first medical mission, and she got to serve with two of her sisters who also work in health care. “The reward of giving back is indescribable,” she said. Stay tuned for more features on our KP physicians who have served abroad!