Day 8 in New Delhi, India
OUR MEDICAL TEAM
Our Rotaplast team of 20 individuals includes 12 medical professionals. Each excels in his/her field, and all have been on multiple missions.
Our lead medical director is Dr. Ron Gemberling. He is a plastic surgeon in private practice who is also on the faculty at Stanford University Medical Center in California. His true love is teaching and sharing his knowledge with professionals and non-professionals alike. He is a member of the Rotary Club of Saratoga and has served on 20 Rotaplast missions.
Dr. Devi Tantri is a retired plastic surgeon from Akron, Ohio who has been on seven Rotaplast missions. In addition to his surgical skills, his knowledge of the Indian culture and fluency of Hindi has been an added benefit for the team.
Dr. Gagan Sabharwal is a local maxillofacial surgeon who is additionally trained and certified in cleft lip and palate repair. He is in private practice at the Sabharwal Center for Cleft and Craniofacial Surgery here in Delhi, India which provides free surgery for children with facial deformities. He is a new honorary member of the Rotary Club of Delhi Vasant Valley and has been on two medical missions. In conjunction with his Rotary Club, he has volunteered to treat cleft lip and palate patients who were turned away during the mission because of health issues.
Dr. Fred Mihm is our lead anesthesiologist. He is on the faculty at Stanford University Medical Center in California, and currently is on sabbatical in New Zealand. He has been on 40 medical missions.
Julie Williamson is a pediatric anesthesiologist at the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford University in California. She has volunteered her time on 2 previous medical missions.
Judy O’Young is an anesthesiologist from Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Oakland, California. At the request of Rotaplast office, she performed the initial site visit to validate the feasibility of this mission in Delhi, India. She has volunteered on over 18 Rotaplast missions.
The lead pediatrician is Katherine Gallagher. She is a doctor at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Walnut Creek, California. She has served on six Rotaplast missions and seven research missions.
Nan Madden is a pediatric nurse practitioner. She is retired from San Francisco General Hospital after 27 years. She is still a part-time Associate Clinical Professor at the University of California San Francisco's School of Nursing. She has served on 17 medical missions, 14 through Rotaplast.
Evelyn Abad is our head nurse. Retired from St. Luke’s Hospital in San Francisco, California, she has volunteered full time for the last 15 years at the Rotaplast office in San Francisco, California. She has participated on over 40 Rotaplast missions. She is a member of the Rotary Club of San Francisco and a Board Member Emeritus for Rotaplast, Inc.
Victoria Slama is our operating room nurse. She is retired from the Mayo Clinic in Arizona. She proudly proclaims, “I have one child but many children.” She has served on 26 medical missions through Rotaplast and 11 others through different organizations.
The lead PACU nurse is Luisa Poquiz. She is retired after a 44 year career as a PACU nurse at Alta Bates Hospital in Berkley, California. She has been on 14 Rotaplast missions.
Cynthia Ideker is a nurse from Olympia, Washington. She works in PACU for the Olympia Outpatient Surgery Center and has volunteered on 3 Rotaplast missions. WHY ROTAPLAST?
Rotaplast services are free and intended to reach out to all regardless of their financial situation. The father of Jatin is an executive for General Electric. During the intake process he was asked how he heard about Rotaplast and why he had decided to come to us. His response was, “I can afford to go anywhere to have my child’s soft palate repaired, but why should I when I know that Rotaplast has the best physicians from around the world.”
[Some of the photographs are courtsey of Judy O'Young.]