Physician Assistant awarded for international mission

Set Text Size SmallSet Text Size MediumSet Text Size LargeSet Text Size X-Large
Share
Updated: 6/07/2013 5:26 am
A soccer scholarship brought Sixtus Atabong to the United States in 1995. It was the first time he had ever really left his village in Cameroon, West Africa.

"I studied and worked my way through college. Went to the Texas Tech PA program and became a physician assistant," he said.

Between patient rounds, checking out new and returning patients, and even diagnosing illness, the role Atabong plays as a PA is vital to West Texas.

"Most people don't know this but the profession, the physician assistant profession, was founded to provide accessible healthcare to people in under served or rural communities," Atabong explained.

The American Academy of Physicians Assistants works to grant recognition and growth for PA's.

"One of the bills is one that allows physician assistants to take care of patients in hospice. To be able to write orders for patients to be transferred to hospice. Also to extend payment to PA's for medicare services," he said.

Aside from the day job, Atabong established Purpose Medical Mission, A non-profit that improves medical care conditions for people in other parts of the world. Its first project was in a village near Atabong's birthplace.

"If you see the house that Sixtus grew up in ... Still has no water, no electricity," recalled Dr. James Burke, an orthopedic surgeon and fellow missionary.

Health care facilities were just as bad. So over the years Purpose Medical Mission has brought groups of doctors, nurses, and even carpenters to improve the circumstances.

"What brought the local community was the pitiful conditions in that village and the need for improvements, particularly as it related to delivering babies and simple surgical procedures," Burke said.

With the work the team has done already, it is no wonder Atabong was awarded the 'PA Service to the Underserved' award for his efforts during the AAPA's annual conference in Washington, DC.
    
"I had to give back to the people who first helped raised me. Just to give back is my way of saying thank you to the people who have helped me in my life," Atabong said.

The story does not end here. Check back with www.MYFOXLUBBOCK.com for more on Purpose Medical Mission next week.
Share
0 Comment(s)
Comments: Show | Hide

Here are the most recent story comments.View All

No comments yet!
Lubbock Weather
68°
Clear

Wind: NE 3 mph
Feels Like: 68°
High: 95°
Low: 68°
Latest Product Recalls
Judge cuts damages in Jeep fire death from $150M to $40M
A Georgia judge has cut the damages that Fiat Chrysler must pay the family of a child who died in a Jeep SUV fire from $150 million to $40 million.
Fiat Chrysler recalls 1.4M vehicles to prevent hacking
Fiat Chrysler has decided to recall about 1.4 million cars and trucks in the U.S. after two hackers were able to take control of a Jeep over the Internet.
Harley-Davidson recalling bikes to fix saddlebag problem
Harley-Davidson is recalling more than 185,000 motorcycles in the U.S. because the saddlebags can come loose and fall off, increasing the risk of a crash.
GM ignition switch deaths and injuries total 393
General Motors' faulty ignition switches were responsible for at least 124 deaths and 269 injuries, according to a fund set up to compensate victims.
Nissan recalls 270K vehicles worldwide to fix start buttons
Nissan is recalling about 270,000 vehicles worldwide because the ignition start buttons can malfunction and unexpectedly shut down the engine.
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.
Mobile advertising for this site is available on Local Ad Buy.