Date of Award

Spring 5-5-2023

Document Type

DNP Project

Project Team Faculty Member

Bernadette K. Sobczak, DNP., APN, CPNP-PC, PMHS

Project Team Faculty Member

Greg M. Jennings, DNP


Short term medical missions, GERD, peptic ulcer, evidence-based, guidelines, protocol, treatment.


The United States conducts over 6,000 international medical mission trips each year. The short-term nature of these trips, unfamiliarity with the patient population, language barriers, limited resources, and inadequate staff training are just some of the factors that make it challenging to provide quality care. One way to avoid doing harm is to follow evidence-based guidelines when treating common conditions. This quality improvement project sought to provide an evidence-based protocol for short-term medical missions (STMMs), guiding providers and pharmacy staff on the treatment of GERD and peptic ulcer. This project was implemented in a rural health clinic at the Land of Hope in Escuintla, Guatemala. A short pre and post-test were utilized to assess provider and pharmacy staff knowledge on the clinical presentation and treatment of GERD and peptic ulcer. At the end of the trip, a post-implementation survey was administered to providers and pharmacy staff volunteers to assess the protocol’s effectiveness and ease of use. The average score on the pretest was 56%, with a range of 7% to 93%. The average score on the post-test was 88%, with a range of 54% to 100%. All post-implementation survey respondents agreed that the training was helpful, the protocol was easy to use, and the protocol helped ensure consistent, evidence-based care was provided to patients. This protocol can serve as a blueprint for future protocols that address commonly seen diseases on STMMs.

Keywords: Short term medical missions, GERD, peptic ulcer, evidence-based, guidelines, protocol, treatment.

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