Well, we all made it back to the states, more of us more or less in one piece. After a long day of traveling, the MSP Airport "Buckle Up" sign on the way out was a welcome sight for us all. Although most of us are well into our weeks, our recent experiences are still fresh in our minds.
All in all, the mission was a success. We performed a total of 37 surgeries total, ranging from bilateral hernia repairs to cleft lips. I believe we have strengthened our bond with St. Damien's and their staff, and we are already planning our next trip back. The goodbyes were all ripe with "whens" not "ifs" which is also telling of the dedication and passion of our team. We all feel a strong bond to this particular site, and whatever the reason for this, it will move many of us to return on successive missions to Haiti.
Trish Valusek, Pediatric Surgeon: Master of the "Haiti Hernia"
Eric Moore, ENT Surgeon: Giver of new smiles (to both patients and families)
Scott LeBard, Anesthesiologist: The only person smart enough to being an umbrella to Haiti during the rainy season
Celeste Gaiser, CRNA: The singing anesthetist
Peter Melchert, Pediatrician: The cheerleader, pep-talker and motivator
Norie Wilson, Float Nurse: Keeper of the pace, and the peace
Trish Cabrera, Floor Nurse: Saint of the Salon de Ballon
Kendra Howe, PACU Nurse: "Santa" of the PACU
Laura Snyder, OR Nurse: Little Miss Sunshine
Arthur Treger, Biomedical Technician: Mr. Fix-it
John Hehre, Logistics Coordinator: Ansel Adams of the OR
Christine Hehre, Medical Records: Composer of the blog