If one wanted to observe the epitome of altruism they need only to pay a visit to any one of the World Pediatric Project Clinics held at the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital in Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The World Pediatric Project, based in Richmond Virginia, is a global network linking worldwide pediatric surgical, diagnostic and preventative resources to heal critically ill children in developing countries. Several times each year, the WPP sends surgical and diagnostic teams to St. Vincent & the Grenadines in pediatric specialty areas of orthopedics, general surgery, ophthalmology, plastic surgery, diagnostic cardiology and neurosurgery.
The October Urology Clinic began at the Out-Patient Department of the hospital with a series of consultations. The students of Trinity School of Medicine made sure that they formed part of the yeoman service given to the many juvenile patients from St. Kitts, St. Lucia, Dominica, Grenada, Anguilla, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Teams of highly-trained pediatric specialists, in a variety of disciplines, are sent to provide critical care services to patients in World Pediatric Project partner countries including St. Vincent. Through donated surgical and medical services, volunteer service, and donors support, the WPP provides the practical means for children to receive state-of-the-art surgical services.
The Urology Clinic team was comprised of Team Leader and surgeon, Dr. Joe Ortenburg, head of the Department of Urology at Children's Hospital New Orleans and trained at the Cleveland Clinic Hospital and The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. Additional members of the team included surgeons Dr. Daniel Corsino and Dr. Michelle Vincent. Dr. Vincent is a Pediatric Surgeon at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Barbados and was participating in her first clinic with the WPP. Rounding out the healthcare team were anesthesiologist – Dr. Paul Bowlin and nurses Susan Couvillon and Erica Lambert.
The students of Trinity, working in different shifts, were able to observe, question and receive practical and theoretical information on the cases seen in this clinic. Opportunities were available for on-site teaching. According to WPP Eastern Caribbean Representative, Vincentian Jacqueline Browne-King, students from Trinity School of Medicine were always on hand to avail themselves of whatever was to be learned. Working along with very accommodating doctors, Browne-King said that the students were taken through the consultations and course of actions for patients. She said that they were able to go home and read up on the cases, then return to witness the surgeries. This, she intimated, allowed them to get a better understanding of the “intricate things that they may have only read in books”. Added to these, they were involved in a Continuing Medical Education (CME) session conducted by Senior Urologist, Dr. Joe Ortenburg.
Working with the medical and government sectors of St. Vincent & the Grenadines, World Pediatric Project has developed an initiative to centralize pediatric critical care services for all of the children of the Eastern Caribbean region on the island of St. Vincent at the main government hospital. Although each island may have a small population, World Pediatric Project can successfully treat many of these children using an economies of scale model to centralize care and services in one location. Through the World Pediatric Project Eastern Caribbean Initiative, rotating volunteer pediatric surgical and diagnostic teams travel annually to the island of St. Vincent in a variety of sub-specialty areas.
Currently, a team from the WPP is in St. Vincent on a scoliosis mission. The team has evaluated 67 children during clinic and are preparing for a total of th and success of the Eastern Caribbean Initiative which extends WPP services to children in the region through connecting them with surgical teams in the hub in St. Vincent.8 8 scoliosis surgeries throughout the week.th and success of the Eastern Caribbean Initiative which extends WPP services to children in the region through connecting them with surgical teams in the hub in St. Vincent.
The Student Government Association and the American Medical Students Association (AMSA) Chapter of Trinity School of Medicine conduct on-going fund-raising initiatives in support of the WPP with their most recent efforts resulted in a $5000 EC donation to benefit the children and families of the Eastern Caribbean.