Most of the Rotaplast team on the Retalhuleu mission to Guatemala gathered at SFO Sunday night and met the rest of the team in Houston. We flew through the night to Guatemala City and then drove in a convoy of buses and a truck to our hotel.
Quartermaster Steve Borkenhagen and some of the medical team transported 34 boxes of supplies to the Hilario Galindo Hospital in preparation for registration day on Tuesday.
Volunteers Laurie Steckel (left), Jill Hoyer (center) and Drinda Olsen set up the registration process on Tuesday.They processed 136 patients the first day.
Belia Contreras, a Rotary Club of Guatemala City employee and one of our translators, explains the registration and evaluation process to the potential patients’ parents.
Potential patients and their parents wait to be registered for clinical screening to determine which children are eligible for surgery.
Laurie Steckel and Head Nurse Jim Galloway prepare a patient for his ID photo.
Nurse Ellen Adams checks a potential patient’s vital signs and draws blood for analysis.
The patient’s blood sample is taken to be analyzed by hospital staff.
The initial clinical evaluation is important because patients with high temperatures, airway obstructions or infections do not qualify for the surgery. They must return later in the mission to be retested or wait for the next mission.
Pediatrician Paula Rand examines a potential surgery candidate and takes a detailed medical history.
Once the registration process and clinical evaluations are completed, Head Nurse Jim Galloway schedules the surgeries.
Head Nurse Jim Galloway of Scottsdale, PA, schedules surgeries.
The next day, Wednesday, will see at least 17 operations, 17 new reconstructed lips and palates, 17 new lives changed for the better. Rotaplast donors and supporters around the world make this wonderful and very necessary work possible. Everyone on the team is aware of the importance of this mission and are grateful to the many people who make it possible. The Rotary Club of San Jose raised $94,000 from its members and the community for the mission, and the Rotary Clubs of Antigua and Guatemala City also raised funds and provided volunteers for the mission.
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