Monday, December 15, 2008

Haiti Trip December 8-12, 2008

Once again we return from another Haiti trip with feelings that words cannot exactly describe. The problems are often overwhelming. In spite of the fact that we are not even making a dent in the overall situation, the lives we do touch are often changed forever. I am always reminded of Thoreau's words "One is not born into the world to do everything, but to do something". Our team is in a very unique situation to provide a service that no one else is able to do. Because of our proximity and ability to transport large amounts of equipment we are always prepared operate on a huge variety of problems. Our Dominican anesthesiologist Dra. Adrian and our nurse Lucia work tirelessly, efficiently and adapt themselves to any situation without complaint. In addition to providing the best in patient care, their work ethic, attitude, and energy always provide a positive experience and inspiration for the rest of us. When one of our children needed a blood transfusion Dra. Adrian donated her A+ blood while giving anesthesia to another patient and then paid for the post transfusion lab test out of her personal money.

This trip we were also privileged to have the expertise of Dr. Wade Faerber Chief of Orthopaedics at Riverside County Regional Medical Center, Dr. Cris Sherman ortho resident and Ralph Burney OR nurse also from Riverside County. It was great to work once again with my old colleagues. Even though we go with the intent of giving we always receive a much larger blessing. Seeing the love of the Haitian people, their raw suffering, and their tolerance of discomfort is a life changing experience for us soft Americans.

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