We held a charity event on Friday, June 20th that provided free dental care to the community. We saw 110 patients that day and gave free cleanings, extractions, and fillings. We stayed in our community in the Melbourne, FL area. That day we had 5 doctors and 3 hygienist working. The most common procedure we did that day was extractions, totaling up to 56 of them. We hope to give back to the community like this again in the near future!
Wellesley College chapter of Global Medical Brigades – El Obraje, Honduras
January 6th-13th, 2014
Wellesley College’ chapter of Global Medical Brigades (GMB) is part of an extensive network of student volunteers that comprises Global Brigades, a non-profit organization whose goal is to aid in the growth of developing nations. During January of 2014, ten Wellesley students participated in a medical brigade to Honduras, a country whose underdeveloped economy and poor infrastructure have contributed to the proliferation of maladies whose acquisition is easily prevented by clean water and sanitary living conditions.
With the generosity of the Henry Schein Cares Foundation, we were able to provide thorough medical & dental care to 949 patients in El Obraje, Honduras. As volunteers, we spent five days interacting with patients as well as their families, obtaining patient history and current symptoms, taking vital signs, and leading preventative education sessions. We taught children how to brush their teeth and provided them with fluoride treatment, toothbrushes and toothpaste. Intestinal parasites and fungal infections were the most common ailments and we were well equipped to treat these patients.
These intimate experiences have allowed us to become familiar with the prevalent health issues facing a poverty-stricken community. Global Brigades has allowed us to be initiated into the world of global health by making a tangible impact in small communities. Being exposed to medicine outside of the United States and understanding how a different culture interacts with their healthcare delivery system has been a remarkable and inspirational experience for us as undergraduate students.
We look forward to our continued relationship with the Henry Schein Cares Foundation to fulfill Wellesley GMB chapter’s ability to participate in this important mission.
Mission Trip to Mission Emanuel, Dominican Republic
April 36-May 3, 2014
Hope Presbyterian Church in Winston-Salem, NC had the opportunity to partner with Mission Emanuel, www.missionemanuel.org, in a trip providing pediatric care, women’s health education and dental care to a community in Cielo, Dominican Republic. Cielo is a poor community outside the capital city of Santo Domingo. Mission Emanuel has been present in Cielo for over 30 years. They have provided many specific services including a water purification plant, a pediatric clinic, a dental clinic, an early intervention program providing physical, occupational and speech therapies to special needs children, schools, a women’s cooperative providing employment to women of the village, a wheelchair factory for special needs individuals and a community health outreach program.
The pediatric team consisted of a general pediatrician and a pediatric emergency medicine physician. They partnered with a Dominican pediatrician to provide well and sick pediatric care to approximately 30 children per day. Routine sick visits were treated including colds, ear infections, asthma exacerbations and skin conditions. The team had the opportunity to treat a deep tissue abscess of the hand in a Haitian child that did not have access to medical care at the hospital.
The dental team consisted of a dentist and other team members that functioned as dental assistants. They partnered with a Dominican dentist to provide dental preventive care and restoration to 10-12 children a day.
The women’s health team was made up of a Women’s Health nurse practitioner and an Ob/gyn nurse. They made home visits to pregnant and postpartum women in the village. They brought a Doppler to allow pregnant women to hear their babies’ heartbeats for the first time. They also educated on women’s health issues.
The team was very impressed with the quality of care provided by the Dominican staff of Mission Emanuel and is looking forward to partnering with them in the future.
Four dental hygiene students (Classes of 2014 and 2015) and three faculty members from Tunxis Community College in Farmington, Connecticut provided over 220 oral screenings, oral education, 926 sealants, fluoride varnish, toothbrushes and toothpaste to the Lakota Children at Eagle Butte Upper Elementary School in South Dakota April 5-11, 2014. This service learning/mission project was made possible with collaboration of Hawkwing and Delta Dental of South Dakota, product donations and fundraising. Hawkwing is a Native American Federal non-profit 501(c)3 organization created to offer cross-cultural education while assisting the people of the Lakota (Sioux) Cheyenne River Indian Reservation in South Dakota meet their basic human needs. The majority of Lakota tribe has lack of access to dental care due to transportation and other factors.
California CareForce is 501c(3) founded to organize and operate temporary mobile free medical, dental and vision clinics. We are an all-volunteer group and have been organizing these clinics for several years. Last year some very generous donations allowed us to purchase almost all of our own equipment. This will allow us to operate more clinics here in California.
We held a 4 Day free Medical, Dental and Vision Clinic at the Riverside County Fairgrounds in Indio CA on April 3-6, 2014. All services were free to the patients. 1,964 patients received 8,802 services valued at $907,447. We fed all the patients during the clinic and provided as many as possible with follow up care for serious medical problems needing additional care.
Volunteers included MD’s, Nurses, Chiropractors, Physician’s Assistants, Hygienists, X-ray Techs, Dentists, Oral Surgeons, Dental Assistants, Ophthalmologists, Optometrists, Opticians, Optical Techs as well as general volunteers of all kinds.
Our services included complete eye examinations for all vision patients. We also made patients new prescription glasses on site while they waited. At this clinic we provided over 700 new pairs of prescription glasses.
We have an extensive dental operation doing x-rays, dental surgery, fillings and reconstruction as well as dental cleanings. Over 1300 patients received much needed help over four days.
We also have a medical section where over 900 patients were able to talk to various medical specialties about their conditions, get blood pressure and glucose and diabetes screening and get prescriptions. We also did referrals for serious illnesses.
At California CareForce we own almost all of the equipment to run our clinics including dental tools, dental stations, eye exam equipment and machines to make prescription glasses. We have developed our own custom patient management software to maintain patient records and custom dental support equipment. We plan and organize all of this so that we can transport everything to a location, setup a clinic in two days and then operate it for several days. All of this effort is funded by generous donations and fully supported by volunteers.
Coachella Valley local news articles on our free clinic.
For more information on California CareForce:
California CareForce President, Volunteer
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