Resident Review  |   September 2015
Medical Mission Opens Up a World of Experience
Article Information
Airway Management / Education / CPD / Pain Medicine / Radiological and Other Imaging / Resident Review
Resident Review   |   September 2015
Medical Mission Opens Up a World of Experience
ASA Monitor 09 2015, Vol.79, 68.
ASA Monitor 09 2015, Vol.79, 68.
In late April 2015, I had the opportunity to travel to Belize with the organization Healing Hands Abroad (HHA) in order to provide medical care to local citizens. HHA focuses on providing surgical, anesthetic and pain management services to the communities it serves. Like other parts of Belize, San Ignacio is a city where people can access basic medical care, but advanced and specialized care often comes at a prohibitively high cost or is unavailable altogether. The patients that we saw were in need of basic surgical procedures, and many suffered from a variety of chronic pain conditions.
A typical day consisted of us traveling to Belmopan, the capital city, to deliver anesthesia and perform operations on those patients we selected as being able to help given our resources. Most patients were ASA Physical Status 1 or 2 and had obtained necessary testing, such as EKG or blood testing, based on our preoperative assessment. The surgeries were carried out at the Western Regional Medical Center with basic, but mostly familiar, surgical and anesthetic equipment. Being able to adapt to the different culture and the use of older, cheaper drugs and supplies was a necessary part of the delivery of care.
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