YOU ARE DOING IT WRONG: SHORT-TERM MEDICAL MISSION TRIPS
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Globally, the United States stands at a great position in health and the administration of it to its nations’ members. Because of its advance medical care system, organizations from the U.S. sends out International medical teams to different parts of the world. However, these short term medical teams may not be as effective as some might believe. The goals and values of these teams may not be understood by the people they serve because of the short time spent. But, there is a way to make these short-term trips worthwhile. If the purpose of the trips becomes to build relationships and help improve lives, then the trips are more successful and establish long-term gains. This research explores long-term principles, that if taken into consideration achieve sustainable means for health in a given community. Short-term medical mission trips must sustain the health of communities they serve by thinking long-term in their approach to collaboration with existing systems of health, educating the people served about health, raising local leadership, and building relationships.