December 22, 2017

Royal Thai nurses visit Nellis to strengthen alliances

by Senior Airman Kevin Tanenbaum
Nellis AFB, Nev.

Royal Thai Air Force nurses meet with Col. Paul Murray, 99th Air Base Wing commander, at the Mike O’Callaghan Military Medical Center at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., Oct. 30, 2017. The 99th Medical Group has hosted three nurses from the Royal Thai Air Force in order to strengthen alliances and innovate patient care for both countries.

For the past two months, the 99th Medical Group at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., has hosted three nurses from the Royal Thai Air Force in order to strengthen alliances and innovate patient care for both countries.

Squadron Leader Jutharat Thepjit, Flying Officer Patcharee Romsaiyud and Flying Leader Wanvisa Amporn of the Royal Thai Air Force spent time in multiple care units at the Mike O’Callaghan Military Medical Center.

“We enjoyed all the experiences, going to different inpatient and outpatient care units, the University Medical Center, getting operating room experience, attending classes and meeting the people here,” said Thepjit. “I like the new experiences and seeing how this hospital works, especially with the electronic health records for patients, Pyxis machines and other technologies.”

The Pyxis medication management stations expedites the way nurses administer patients’ medications, said Lt. Col. Nisa Pistone, 99th MDG Education and Training Flight Commander. The system enhances patient safety, enables better inventory management, and saves the pharmacy and nursing staff valuable time.

Practices such as this are examples of what the nurses want to incorporate into patient care when they return to Bangkok.

“How you take care of high risk patients is something that we want to take back to Thailand that we have learned during the program,” said Thepjit. “This includes emphasizing managing care of our patients before they have to go to the hospital or higher level of care.”

“They have observed differences in the practice of nursing in the United States versus Thailand,” said Pistone. “We have also discovered some aspects of care in their country that is more advanced than what we currently deliver. It’s been a great opportunity to appreciate the contrasts in healthcare delivery.”

The 99th MDG has experienced the benefits of this partnership, even though it is the first of its kind. Everyone involved in the visit hopes to continue strengthening alliances in this way in the future.

“This has been an incredible experience,” said Pistone. “Part of the officer professional development emphasizes cross cultural competence and understanding. Having the Royal Thai Air Force nurses visit for two months reinforced that training, facilitated a better understanding of the differences, but most importantly we found commonalities in our work as nurses and our personal values.”

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