Two volunteers checking X-Ray during clinic
Floating Doctors had a productive and busy summer in Panama, conducting clinics in Norteno, Bahia Azul and Ensenada. Volunteers from around the world donated their time and skills throughout the Bocas del Toro archipelago.
We were visited and partnered by Sermo, the largest online community, exclusive to physicians. With over 200,000 licensed physicians, Sermo is facilitating collaboration in medicine like never before. The Rio Cana community was visited for the first time. To get there the volunteers traveled 6 hours through the archipelago by panga, then navigated up over a reef at the mouth of the river and up the river to the community. Several complicated cases were presented by satellite to Sermo and consults appeared from all over the network. This cutting edge use of social media by Sermo and Floating Doctors was noted by Unicef.
One woman on the outskirts of Rio Cana delivered a baby, and then began to bleed out. Volunteers bundled her into a panga with the newborn and crossed the archipelago by flashlight and moonlight. They made it to the mainland hospital ...mother and child doing well! This on the very night the Lawrence Family Foundation was awarding Floating Doctors a grant for the first, permanent clinic.
Noah Haas is installing solar power stations in remote villages to bring internet to these remote areas which will greatly enhance the ability of Floating Doctors to connect these isolated peoples with the world's online medical community.
Volunteers continue to collect cultural history of the Ngobe.
The electronic medical record system, unique to the kind of work Floating Doctors does, is nearly finished and will be another contribution to the international medical relief community.
One happy personal note:
Karine Tchakerian will be joining Floating Doctors permanently as Mrs. LaBrot!!
Karine earned her Masters in Nursing Science from UCLA, graduating this last June. Dr. Ben and Karine were married Oct. 5. Welcome aboard, Karine!
Conducing a house call in Norteno
The community of Cierro Brujo
Floating Doctors team after a clinic in Bahia Azul
Noah Haas installing solar panels
Telecom team with community members