Honduras– Looking Forward

Photos: 1. Bird’s eye view of Tegucigalpa! 2. July’s Outreach Brigade team. 3. Kids at the San Lorenzo Orphanage. 4. A night out on the town–in line for an African dance performance at the National Theater in Tegucigalpa’s own Central Park!

After 9 weeks of living, laughing, and learning in Honduras, I have finally arrived back in my hometown of Los Angeles! Yesterday, Thursday, I wrapped up the Honduras Eye Disease Study. During this time, I have had the pleasure and privilege of interviewing just over 60 Hondurans throughout the country about their ocular and physical health. Not only has this enriched my knowledge of what ocular diseases are present as I work with the on-site ophthalmologist, but it has also opened my eyes to the vastly different lives of the people that live there–from retired educators and health workers to aspiring students to self-proclaimed “machete-wielders”.

After much discussion with Dr. Agrawal, with whom I am working at the Doheny Eye Institute at the USC Health Sciences Campus, we have decided that due to the unexpected low turnout of subjects for the study, we would have another person at the clinic continue the study for 3 more weeks until the end of August. This way, we may be able to recruit more subjects from the Fall crowd, which usually picks up during this month. I will be meeting with Dr. Agrawal at Doheny this week to begin analyzing and organizing the results of the study…and also share a cup of Honduran coffee with him!

I am sincerely grateful for the USC Institute for Global Health’s support of this study. I cannot express with words how much this experience has brought global health–as a field of both research and activism–to be one of my top interests as I continue my undergraduate studies. I look forward to working closely with the Institute as I conclude the HEDS study, and even beyond!
Thank you
Alice Kim