Dr Fields volunteers his time with the Hackett-Hemwall Foundation at free medical clinic in Honduras.
In 2009, Dr Fields was appointed Director of La Ceiba Clinic
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|Click to Read Part 1|
Click to Read Part 2
Click to Read Part 3
|Honduras 2009 Week 1|
Honduras 2009 Roatan
Honduras 2009 Week 2
After a red eye flight to Miami, my trip began on a great note as I received a big hug from my mom who was waiting for me at the Miami Airport. Then had a nice leisurely breakfast with her and my bother who came with her to the airport. After several hours with them, it was an hour and 40 minute flight to Honduras where I ran into half a dozen on my colleagues on the plane. After clearing customs most of the crowd was already there waiting in the airport. It was a re-union as I have worked with some of these people for the past five years. Then a three car ride to La Ceiba, not only our base city, but the city I will be working in. It is a pleasant town of about 170,000 people. The next day we had lectures for 8+ hrs as this is also an educational experience (continuing education credits given by the University of Wisconsin Medical School).
After the introduction by Dr Jeff Patterson (the head of the Hackett Hemwall Organization)
I gave the first lecture of the day starting at 8am. It was a lecture on the knee which took over 20 hrs to prepare! It was well received by all. This was followed by many other lectures form different colleagues of mine on various topics. This took all day until 5:30pm. I then gave the final lecture of the day titled "How to Present Prolotherapy to Potential Patients and other Colleagues". This lecture received many praises as many physicians do not know how to do get the Prolo word out. Plus Prolotherapy is natural and non-mainstream which requires additional explanation.
Sunday was a day off but some of us helped to organize the La Ceiba Clinic. Of course I was there as I will be the director of the clinic. The other two clinic gourps left at noon for their respective cites. I will see them again next weekend as we go to the coastal Honduran Island of Roatan for a break.
We were left with 25 people for the clinic - 18 docs and 6 helpers.
Monday I start work as the director of the LA Ceiba Clinic.
The first week is now over and all went well. The first day was quite hectic. I was in charge of all 19 doctors and four of the helpers. Plus we had translators from a school here in La Ceiba, who I also was responsible for.
After getting everyone orientated, we began seeing patients. We saw a total of 64 patients the first day which was quite a lot considering that every area had one student and one teacher. I was the floater, going wherever I was needed to explain a procedure or demonstrate it. The clinic is opened from 8am until about 5:3opm with an hour break for lunch.
Since this is a teaching situation, we have half an hour lecture every morning at breakfast on basic anatomy. At lunch we have the second half of the lecture which is orthopedic tests and injection procedures. Later at dinner, we discuss any unusual cases or whatever else someone has questions on. ,I gave the first days lecture on the knee. The other days were assigned to the instructor doctors.
In addition to the above, during the day I have to make up that mornings or afternoons assignment (which instructor with which student), handle all problems with the running of the clinic, meet with Red Cross people (we are using their building) and even do an interview with a local TV station. Plus I am the roving doc in the clinic, going to whatever station needs help to either demonstrate or do an injection. So very busy but exiting too. All the days went well.
Now that the week is over, we all flew to Roatan, a laid back resort island off the coast of Honduras. We will be here for the weekend to relax and have some fun before we head back early Monday am.
That is about it for now.
PS I still get to work out almost daily. Four or five of us get up early am to either run, swim or go to the local gym.
Peter A. Fields MD. DC.
Pacific Prolotherapy and Medical Wellness Center
After the first week, we took a break and the group went to the island or Roatan, just 15 miles off the coast of Honduras. Roatan is laid back Caribbean island where English is the primary language. The activities included scuba diving, snorkeling, sailing, zip lining, swimming, and running, biking, laying on the beach or just doing nothing. A very relaxing time for all. Five of us (myself included) went scuba diving on Saturday and it was excellent. Friday Night we had buffet dinner at a restaurant overlooking the water. It was a time to get to see the whole group as we had split up a week ago. This evening was sponsored by the foundation. Saturday and Sunday we were on our own.
Monday it was back to the clinics. The week went smoothly again. As a note, our translators came form the #1 bilingual school in all of Honduras. Very mature and well educated kids ranging from the 9th to the 12th grade. All spoke english without a trace of an accent and were applying to US Universities. One girl spoke, wrote and read four languages (spanish, english, french and german) fluently! Since one of my student docs was from Switzerland, he also spoke german.
I was always busy since as the floater doc (not attached to any one person or room),
I was the one that people came to when there was something that they were unsure of or needed help with. This week I let most of the docs work on their own in a treatment area to give them a feel for the real world. This kept me even busier than the last week with all their questions. Plus there were many other clinic concerns to be aware of. But all in all it was great week. Thursday night we had a farewell party at the Ex-Pat’s restaurant for all of the 75 + people involved. Dr Jeff Patterson, the head of the organization, spoke about the accomplishments of this 40th year anniversary trip to Honduras. All three clinic directors were given praises and a chance to address the entire group. I also had made a poem up to acknowledge the great efforts of Dr. Patterson and Mary Doherty (his partner), who run the Hackett-Hemwall Foundation. The next day, Friday, we left for our trip back to our respective counties, which included the US, Canada, Mexico, Nicaragua, Italy, Switzerland, South Africa and more.
One last glitch was that a civil strike was planned for that day in which they were going to shut down all the major roads at 5 or 6am. So to be sure that we all got to the airport on time, our buses left at 4am. Since it was a late night with the farewell party, when we got to the airport 5-7 hrs prior to our flights, a lot of catch of sleeping was done.
That is about it.
Again, it was very rewarding for me to be able to donate my time and effort to this third world country and at the same time help train more physicians in Prolotherapy.
Thanks for taking the time to read all of this. Feel free to ask me any questions .
And is so inclined, check out the Hackett-Hemwall Organization website at: www.hacketthemwall.org/
PS Within a week or so I will have pictures of the trip posted at http://picasaweb.google.com/pafdcmd.
Look for the 2009 postings under Honduras