The following questions were sent to me by my mother who is an educator and registered nurse. Addressing this issue could be a huge plus for missionaries around the world. I would like your thoughts (particularly that of any minister or missionary who reads this blog):
Background: Missionaries and their families go to foreign fields all over the world. I assume that part of their preparation is to learn about the language and ethnic customs of the peoples they will be living among. I have talked to several missionaries and have been told that they didn’t have medical training prior to going into the mission field.
As a nurse educator, I would like to have a response to the following three questions:
Question #1: Are the missionaries and their families being instructed on the following health related issues such as the following:
- What diseases are indigenous to the country; how to prevent “catching” those diseases?
- If one would contract a indigenous disease, how to treat it.
- Basic first aid and emergency childbirth.
- Basic nutrition: how to select foods and prepare a healthy menu to address leading killers such as heart disease, stroke, and cancer.
- Proper hand washing techniques to prevent the spread of infection.
- Knowledge of what diseases are spread through blood and body fluids and how to prevent the spread of theses diseases to self and family.
Question #2: Is there a need for educating our missionaries in the above areas
Question #3: Do missionaries think this education is important or would have been helpful?
Thanks in advance for any response.
Carole S. Dabbs, RN
In addition to the above three questions I would like to add: Is this information already out there? Is it readily available to missionary teams? What other health related issues are being missed that could keep our missionaries healthy?