The Rotaplast team in Cumaná has now completed six of our seven days of surgery. We've also had one day off, during which we took a tour of the city, shopped at an outdoor market, and were entertained at a nice beach party by the Cumanagato Rotary Club.
The surgery continues to go well, at about 15 cases per day. While this kind of work can never become routine, the mission is being accomplished as scheduled. Here are some more pictures:
Surgeons Darwin Pinzon and Gary Gallagher work together on a child with cleft lip.
Head Nurse Debbie Dean shows her compassion for a nervous patient. These days can be scary for the little ones, but our team of volunteers is there with patience and hugs.
Ward coordinator John Madden completes records as pediatrician Nan Madden discuss home recovery procedures with the parents of a little girl who is about to be released. Interpreter Daniel Rondon is at left.
Anesthesiologists Sarah Bain and Fred Mihm prepare a patient for surgery. Nurse Lorrie Martin is at right, and local student nurse Grecia Bagdo is at rear.
A Rotaplast mission isn't exactly a "well-oiled machine," but mission director Ken Funk and Quartermaster Mike Korengel keep it all under control.
On our very sunny day off, we visited an old fortress that once protected Cumaná. It felt great to relax after four very long days of surgery. Our invaluable Rotaplast in-country coordinator, Roberto Saettone, is third from right in front row.
If you're wondering why the whole team isn't in the picture, don't worry – they're on the next bus. There will be a complete group photo! More soon.