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FEATURE


XX Patients wait in the preop area of the Holy Family Surgery Center in Honduras, before the COVID-19 pandemic.


One World Surgery Needs Volunteer Consults


Physicians in the US who sign up would work with local physicians in Honduras and the Dominican Republic BY SAHELY MUKERJI


L


ike the rest of the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted Honduras and the Domini- can Republic (DR), the two countries where One World Surgery (OWS) sends its medical mission teams. The organization has a surgery center in Honduras, the Holy Family Surgery Center, and has started construction on a new facility in the DR. “The health and safety of our patients, volunteers and team are our


top priorities and because of this, One World Surgery has made a decision to cancel or postpone medical mission trips,” says Claire Cunningham, chief executive officer of the organization. “Our team continues to monitor the global situation, and any changes to future trips will be communicated via email to registered volunteers four to six weeks prior to the trip start date.” While the missions are on hold, OWS needs physician volunteers to


14 ASC FOCUS FEBRUARY 2021 | ascfocus.org


provide virtual consults to patients in Honduras and the DR, says Maria Doria, medical missions manager of OWS. “There is an opportunity for US physicians to collaborate with our bilingual local physicians in Honduras and the DR,” she says. “In the DR, our local physician may request a second opinion on care plans for patients with chronic condi- tions. In Honduras, we are using vir- tual consults to clear patients for sur- gery. The local physicians share their assessments of the patients, as well as their medical history and exam results, with the US physician vol- unteers who review them and decide whether a patient is healthy enough for surgery.” For its DR patients, OWS needs pri-


mary care providers to review cases with the local OWS physician. For vir- tual consults in Honduras, OWS needs


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