Sabana de la Mar

I spent the last week with an amazing group of people with Medical Ministry International in Sabana de la Mar, Dominican Republic. It was truly a life changing experience; opening my eyes to the awesome privilege of being blessed with my particular set of skills as a nurse anesthetist. The week began with a flight to Santo Domingo and a van ride to Sabana de la Mar over a very rough and winding country road. The roads and the Dominicans make for an “interesting yet tense” experience for your first time. First off, there are motorcycles everywhere (and I do mean everywhere – sidewalks, the shoulders of the roads, the wrong side of the road, and even occasionally in the road). But Dr. Teo Beato got us there in one piece. We spent the weekend getting acquainted with everyone on the project and allowing those who had already been there a week some time for R&R. Monday thru Thursday was full of surgeries. The major surgery cases requiring anesthesia usually finished up around 1-3 pm but the surgeons kept right on working till around 5-5:30 pm with minor surgery cases (lovingly referred to as lumps and bumps for lipomas, ganglions, moles, etc). With only two operating tables, the project completed over 130 surgeries in 9 days. I feel I have grown thru the experience and look forward to going on more mission trips. Right now I’m trying to decide if it would be fun to go other places, maybe even non-medical trips, or set my sites on helping out the community of Sabana de la Mar…

Here are some of the pictures and videos I got along the way (Disclaimer: I am nurse anesthetist, NOT a photographer).

For about the middle third of the drive, it is almost endless sugar cane fields.IMG_0076

These next pictures are a little blurry because the road was rather bumpy. The Repuesto is a tire replacement shop from what I am told. Yes, that is a Bank for the second picture. The third picture shows the rather unique perspective the Dominicans have in regards to road safety.  The last picture in this group shows what seemed to be the average distance a building is from the country highway/road.
IMG_0080 IMG_0083 IMG_0089 IMG_0100

This is probably the best picture of the Dominican Hato Mayor province countryside.
IMG_0106

Srta Elupina Cordero Hospital and a courtyard dedicated in her honor. They think of her as the Mother Teresa of Sabana de la Mar.
IMG_0114 IMG_0169

Our accommodations were complete with mosquito nets but the food was exceptional.
IMG_0115
IMG_0124

The typical hospital room at the hospital (complete with four beds, no lights, no bathroom, and no meal service – if you want to eat, your family/friends bring it) and a panoramic shot of our surgery room with two OR tables.
IMG_0163
IMG_0164

A couple pictures of our MMI team. The first is our OR crew and the second is part of our PreOp & Recovery team.
IMG_0154
IMG_0156

The last pictures are of the Dominican Republic Anesthesiology Residents (Cesar did anesthesia for one of the OR tables while I did the other and Aimee did all the PreOp H&Ps) I worked alongside during our trip and Dr. Beato and me.
IMG_0136
IMG_0171

Well… It was quite an experience; one that I think everyone should experience to some extent in their lives.

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Missions. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Sabana de la Mar

  1. Good post. I absolutely love this site. Keep writing!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s