A surgical resident gets his first hands on experience.
Behind every good surgeon is a good anesthesia provider.
Babies being born, including by C-Section, is the primary function of the hospitals where we do missions. Our scholarship student gets to hold a newborn.
An Ecuadorian ambulance compared to a US one.
The open air markets offer opportunities to appreciate the agrarian lifestyle that predominates among indigenous people.
Guaranda open air market, 2011.
Veteran nurse of 23 missions
Grilled guinea pigs are a delicacy in Ecuador
Interpreters are essential to communication and help us negotiate cultural differences.
Often we are outnumbered by the duffle bags of medical supplies and medications.
Dominican woman, Villa Vasquez, 2015
The a.m. bus ride to the hospital
Veteran nurse of 20+ missions
Pre-op can get pretty lively as families and patients typically socialize while waiting for their turn.
The tropics offer an abundance of frutas (Dominican Republic)
Some of our volunteers are "adoptees" from other locations, such as this OR nurse from Canada. When we serve under the sponsorship of an international mission organization, we meet a lot of people like us!
A surgeon enjoys an olive appetizer during the group's tourist outing on Saturday.
Necessary anesthesia tools: a Leatherman and duct tape for jury rigging the anesthesia machine
OR Tech with an Ecuadorian peer at our host hospital
Each year we get a handful of children needing surgery.
Most ORs where we work are not used and have little if any usable equipment. Thus we and our host organization have to provide nearly all equipment and supplies.
Instruments have to be brought with us. Many of our volunteers bring their own medical equipment as well.
Marya first came as a child along with her dad, a translator. She later did a year in Ecuador during high school. She returned with the group as a medical student and now is a family practice physician in Alaska.
The boys (surgeons and OR tech) enjoy some down time at Banos Ecuador, which is a tourist spa destination.
Iglesia
2011 OR Team. Mary (back, center) is a general helper who has performed instrument sterilization on many missions.
Clinics are typically held in churches, schools or town halls in remote areas and handle up to 150 people a day. Long lines are typical.
General helpers preparing sterile instrument packets, Dominican Republic 2015
Niños en la escuela
It is not uncommon for volunteers to bring offspring.
Big domino doings, Villa Vasquez DR
The top of Chimborazo volcano is the furthest point on the earth's surface from the center of the earth. Why? Because there is a "bulge" in the earth in this region.

Hancock County Medical Mission ~ P.O. Box 241 Ellsworth ME 04605