Florida surgeons to help in Puthukudiyiruppu
[TamilNet, Friday, 16 September 2005, 03:58 GMT]
Florida based Rotarian Dr Ali Tahiri, plastic surgeon Dr Bart Rademaker, and an Occupational Therapist are scheduled to visit on post-tsunami aid mission to the NorthEast of Sri Lanka early October. The team will conduct counselling sessions and perform surgeries at the Jaffna Teaching Hospital and in Puthukudiyiruppu hospital, Dr Tahiri told TamilNet.
Dr Tahiri has a busy schedule till the end of October. "I will be in Pascagoula, Mississipi on 22 September for Katrina relief work and will proceed to work at Guadalajara, Mexico, Medical Relief clinic for five days till 2nd October. I will be in Indonesia for tsunami relief for work for a week and will proceed to Sri Lanka for 10 days from 15 October,” Dr Tahiri said. Dr Rademaker will join him along with Ms Catherine Zuiker an occupational Therapist to Sri Lanka.
“We hope to train local doctors in basics of plastic surgery and counselling work besides leaving around $150K worth of medicines, and surgical instruments for Jaffna and Puthukkudiyiruppu hospitals,” he added.
This is Dr. Tahiri's third visit to Sri Lanka. His first trip to Sri Lanka in January was mainly a fact-finding mission to assess the medical needs of tsunami hit areas. He visited Muttur, Hambantota and other coastal areas and worked with local Rotary club to provide medical assistance. Dr Rademaker, nurses Maureen Huemee and Ms Sara Lucas accompanied Dr Tahiri on the second trip in April when they conducted Trauma Counseling sessions and performed plastic surgery on a number of cases. Additionally they donated surgical appliances and over $80,000 worth of medicines and drugs for free clinics for primary healthcare.
The relief effort to Sri Lanka was initiated by students of Pine View school in Sarasota Florida as project “Wave Aid” when the students decided in January to raise money for tsunami victims in Sri Lanka. The fund-raising efforts rippled through the school and community, expanded and provided the initial impetus to the relief work for the surgical team.