Honduras: Day 4

Source: Blog Post

A well rested team prepares for a new day of surgeries with the local Ruth Paz doctors.

The theme is quite clearly organized chaos, but after two days of practice, a common sense of purpose has helped the team gel.

The day was full of interesting cases; A young boy with radial deficiency, a young girl with an large median nerve neuroma after falling through glass.

A man with extensor tendon ruptures after wrist fusion are just a few.  The day began with rounding on the previous day’s inpatients and this was pleasantly simplified by the fact everyone was in the same room.

Things were moving along quite smoothly until one of the anesthesia machines started making a funny noise.  The anesthesia team soon discovered oxygen was not being delivered to the patients.  It is these times of stress that make clear what your team is truly made of. The local anesthesia team sprung to action and the problem was fixed nearly immediately, but the entire team was involved in the troubleshooting process that helped resolve the issue.

After the operating day, we were treated to a visit and tour of the Elcatex factory where we were able to witness efficiency and productivity in its purest form.

Elcatex employs well over a thousand native Hondurans and serves as an economic pillar of the community.

The next stop was a housing development being being spearheaded by the vice president of the Elcatrex group, Jesus Canahuati.  The goal is to create safe, sustainable communities with individual housing enabling an improved quality of life for the families of San Pedro Sula.

Our last stop of the day was a girls orphanage.  The Elcatrex team had arranged for new pots and pans, books, a microwave, and a new pair of shoes for each of the girls to be delivered by our surgical team and we were certainly welcomed with open arms.  We were an audience to a fantastic violin performance at the orphanage as well as a singing presentation. The littlest one, Ana, managed to get one of her new shoes on, and as you can see, was too preoccupied to focus on the dance number being performed by the other girls.

Hungry and exhausted, we return to the hotel to prepare for another day of operating.  We each chose our path in health care because we enjoy helping people, and no one can help people individually in the way a member of the medical team can, but today we witnessed a family and company that has touched the lives of hundreds of thousands, if not more, Hondurans.  What they have done for the prosperity and betterment of Honduras can not be understated, and as the day draws to a close, we are inspired but what we have seen and this fuels our desire to keep helping people in the best way that we can.