About

Photo by Dhrutika Vansia – https://not-figured-out.com

Laura Barnes MSN, FNP-C

Providing health tips for raising healthy global kids

Every mom has a medicine cabinet. Some have carefully labeled Tupperware containers fully stocked with unexpired medications. Others have a black plastic bag of half empty bottles twisted and hidden under a pile of folded clothes. All over the world, moms love their children and want them to be healthy. Some have access to a children’s hospital with every specialty. Others live a half-day’s walk from the closest government health center.

Most of my patients, global children, live in both worlds.

Even though I grew up in Africa, I struggle with the disconnect between all the medical resources, knowledge, experts, and supplies we have access to in the States compared with what is available in most of the world.  Even within Africa there remains a divide between those that have a fully stocked medicine cabinet and those that do not. With my background in nursing I have learned that knowledge goes a long way towards narrowing the gap.  Most of the evidence-based health care information on the internet is directed towards those that have access to every resource and specialty.

The first purpose of this site is to help stock your medicine cabinet with evidence-based knowledge and tools for living in a limited resource setting. I want to help you use your medicine cabinet to care for your family, particularly in Malawi. A secondary purpose is to give you evidence-based knowledge and tools to help stock the medicine cabinets of moms you know in your community. Take the simple, clear, but reliable health information you get from this website and pass it on to your neighbors that don’t have access to the internet. These moms should not rely on your medicine cabinet.  Through your relationships, teach parents in your community how to stock their own medicine cabinets with resources that they have access to, so that they are empowered to care for their children as well. 

Qualifications

Adult Third Culture Kid

I am a global child myself. As an American, I was submerged in public school in France at the age of 8. I grew up in the French West African countries of Burkina Faso and Cote d’Ivoire, returning to the United States for university in 1995. I’m as comfortable visiting with friends on a mat under a mango tree as I am having coffee at Starbucks. (though Mugg and Bean may be more my style)

Global Family

As a wife and mother, I have cared for my family and others in seven countries (United States, Colombia, Canada, Russia, Nigeria, Ghana, and Malawi) across four continents. While my husband is as American as can be, our boys were both adopted from Colombia and truly identify with the quote on the home page.

My family July 2020

Family Nurse Practitioner

Certified as a family nurse practitioner by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (http://aanpcert.org), I have the joy of caring for global families at a private clinic in the southeastern African country of Malawi. I care for pediatric patients, focusing on preventive health well-baby exams, immunization consultations, and treating common childhood illnesses.

Christian

As a Christian, I approach health care and share information from a Christian worldview. While I respect that patients of other faiths may not hold this same perspective, I hope they see that it causes me to value both people and science.  This worldview holds that:

  • God created every human in his image. Each person has value and purpose.
  • God created an orderly world. Science is the study of those patterns and gives us knowledge of how to best care for ourselves and others.
  • The world is broken and full of injustice due to sin.
  • Jesus Christ is the only worthy sacrifice for that sin and will one day correct every injustice.
Experiences

Education

1998 ASN -Samford University

2000 BSN- Samford University

2011 MSN- University of Louisville

Work Experience

1998-2000 RN Med/Surg/Oncology

2000-2004 RN Main Emergency Room

2004-2006 Full time Mom in Russia

2006-2007 RN Main Emergency Room

2008-2011 RN Peds After Hours ER

2012-2016 Full time Mom in Nigeria, Ghana, and Malawi

2016-Present FNP for Kids at ABC Community Clinic

On this website I use trustworthy evidence-based sources such as the CDC, WHO, American Academy of Pediatrics, NHS, Malawi Ministry of Health, Nemours, Pediacast, etc… to develop content.  I then use my clinical judgment and patient values to adjust it to our context in a limited resource setting.  The information on this website should not be used in place of sound medical advice from a trusted health care provider that knows you and your setting. The information on this website reflects my own views and are not necessarily the views of my employers.

%d bloggers like this: