One Vision International
As a volunteer with One Vision International, Dr. Balentine traveled to the Dominican Republic and Haiti providing humanitarian relief, but this was his first medical mission and his first trip to the Middle East.
By the time Dr. Balentine and his colleagues left Iraq, they helped provide 70 Iraqi doctors with ACLS certifications.
Providing Certifications Internationally
The focus of One Vision International “is to meet immediate physical needs in order to bring hope to communities.”
For Dr. Balentine, providing critical certifications to improve patient outcomes seemed a natural fit for the organization’s goals.
Finding ACLS certifications that would work for providers across country divides and time zones, however, created unique challenges.
That’s when Dr. Balentine discovered CareerCert, which provides accredited online ACLS, BLS, PALS, and NRP certifications.
“I reached out to CareerCert, and they were more than happy to partner with us,” Dr. Balentine says. “Everyone was really helpful in the office. We ran 70 providers through the course and got their cards printed off—it was a unique scenario, but it worked remarkably well.”
The 2019 trip to Iraq was so successful that Dr. Balentine returned in January 2020.
The online certifications offered the flexibility of accessing courses anytime, anywhere it works best for the providers.
“Having the option to start and stop going through the course almost like reading a book, I think that’s very convenient,” Dr. Balentine shares. “Sometimes, as a provider, you will have 15 minutes, sometimes you’ll have an hour to review. Whatever time you have available, you can make the most of it and pick up right where you left off.”
Improving Delivery of Care
In addition to the convenience of the online certifications, Dr. Balentine shares, “In regards to quality, I think the course and all the online materials are really, really good. The online resources were very helpful.”
He continues, “Not only that, but the benefit of having the resource available to reference for years afterward and maintaining that online access provides important review and keeps those skills sharp.”
In addition to offering the ACLS certifications, Dr. Balentine and his colleagues provided practicals and hands-on training. “We threw some really hard scenarios at them,” Dr. Balentine says. “We really pushed them to think about what you do after your first 3 or 4 lines of treatment don’t work.”
Dr. Balentine observed how the combination of the online certifications and in-person practicals provided benefits in “improving their delivery of care.” A week after leaving Iraq in 2020, Dr. Balentine received an email from the chief resident.
“The email said that one of the newly certified ACLS providers doing an ambulance ride responded to a heart attack and they ran the ACLS algorithm and were able to get the patient’s pulse back, and they survived and made it to the hospital, surviving a stent placement so that they were later discharged from the hospital.”
Dr. Balentine’s work in Iraq is far from over. After his most recent trip, Dr. Balentine notes that there were still more than 150 Iraqi providers who wanted to receive their ACLS certification, so he plans to return in the near future. About his experience with CareerCert, Dr. Balentine says, “Their course would be recommended, and we plan on partnering with them again next year.”