UVA GI Cardiovascular Disease Project Blog Post 2

Laura Deal_Guatemala6

We have been working hard at CAIMI and it’s paid off! We started off Tuesday strong and had 8 participants, and ended our first week with a total of 25, which was much more than we had expected. Most of our interviews were in Tzutujil, and 2 in Spanish. Our team set up camp each day in a small exam room in the CAIMI building, and with the help of some of the staff, began asking patients waiting if they would be interested in joining our study. Diego would first give the participant information on the process and provide them with informed consent forms, and then would conduct an interview designed to assess a person’s health habits and knowledge. He would them give each person a tailored lesson using a handy flipchart on heart health, healthy living, and wise eating choices based on their responses to the interview. Each person has agreed to be reinterviewed in 3 months for a follow up on the effectiveness of the lesson given (i.e. did they make any lifestyle changes, or is their knowledge on heart healthy living improved). We have loved working with these vibrant people, in their vibrant garb, and sharing laughs despite our language barriers! We’re looking forward to starting some of the data analysis from our participants thus far to get an idea of the state of things prior to Diego’s lovely lesson!

Prior to departing for Guatemala, Dr. Luna (one of our faculty advisors), had told us that he was hoping we’d have 50 participants in our individual study, and 50 in our group class study. Simone and I had been a little skeptical (and so was Jessica, our in country coordinator), but I’m happy to report that we reached our goal for individuals last Thursday with 50! We still only have 8 group participants from the one class, but we’re expecting to have at least another class this week, and one next week. Simone and I are hoping that we’ll have one more that we can attend before leaving Santiago on Friday, but we’re confident that Diego is rip-roaring and ready to go solo! Since we’ve reached our individual participant goal, we have stopped going to CAIMI, and have started with data entry/analysis. We’ve entered everything into our spreadsheet, double checked it over, and have started crunching some numbers. We had a meeting with Dra. Irene and Diego this evening, and it was requested of us that we make up some pie charts and bar graphs. Coming right up?

-Laura Deal


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