Operation Airway Trip 2014

Trip Date:

March 2015

Trip Destination:

The next Operation Airway mission will take place in the Domonican Republic at the Hospital General de la Plaza de la Salud, Santa Domingo. Local surgeon, Dr. Marcos Mirambeaux, is very committed to his pediatric patients. There are more than 100 children with tracheostomis who cannot go to school or interact with other children. Dr. Mirambeaux wants to build a team to care for these children and Operation will help him do so. He also cares for many children who have had airway and digestive trauma, burns or who suffer from respiratory papilloma. Our goal is to help him help these children as well.

Tips for Health Care Professionals:

Preparing for the Trip

Please download the Release from Liability Form and Personal Information & Emergency Contact Form and return them by email to christopher_hartnick@meei.harvard.edu ASAP.

Team members may be sharing rooms (according to gender).
Any room charges, other than accommodation, are at the member's own expense. Side trips, trip extension, touring, phone calls, etc., are at team member's expense (although we will be planning to group field trips during the mission).

Make sure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months from day of departure. If not, get it renewed; otherwise the airline will not let you board your flight.
We do not provide any travel insurance. Team members will be responsible for any personal health, life, accident, disability or liability insurance for self and/or belongings. If you would like to purchase travel insurance, please contact: www.csatravelprotection.com or www.travelguard.com.

Dr. Hartnick and Dr. Noviski are the Team Leaders for the mission. In addition, a representative from each specialty shall be appointed to oversee that specialty. These are to include: Surgeons, ICU Staff, Anesthesia, and Nursing.

Travel Arrangements

If you are connecting on more than one airline domestically, pick up your luggage from the first airline and then check it in with your international carrier. Don't check your luggage all the way for an international trip when using 2 different and non-affiliated airlines. If you will be in the OR, please bring 2-3 pairs of scrubs and shoe covers/hats/masks for your personal use.

What to Bring

  • Please bring a supply of your own scrubs.
  • Please bring with you a good trekking light which can be used in place of a headlight in case the latter is not available or electricity is lost during surgery.
  • Please remember to limit the amount of time spent between anesthesia induction & incision.
  • Remember to bring a small flashlight for use on clinic day.

Head Nurse: bring extra packing tape and plastic tie wraps in carry-on.
Anesthesia, Pediatrician, PACU: Please bring a stethoscope for your personal use on the trip. Please also review specific packing lists and duty descriptions sent to you.

Health Care/Immunizations

We suggest visiting a travel clinic regarding any necessary immunization specific to the location.

To avoid any intestinal "issues", we suggest Culturelle 1 tablet 2x1day to be started 2 days prior to travel (can be found OTC). Culturelle helps with traveler's diarrhea. You have to be careful about drinking bottled water & avoiding fresh salads and ice.

It is suggested that you bring a prescription for Cipro should there be a need for antibiotic therapy.

Don't forget prescription drugs for personal use (in original pharmacy container if able).

Trip Safety

  • People should walk in groups. Don't travel alone - unless notifying someone where you are going.
  • Don't wear expensive jewelry.
  • Never flash money in an area where someone can see it.
  • Look around, stay aware of your surroundings, and take notice if someone seems too interested in you.
  • Only drink bottled water. Do NOT order drinks with ice!
  • Eat foods that are cooked or have been peeled by you.
  • Do not discuss travel plans with strangers.
  • Any specific safety tips for the are you are visiting will be discussed at a team meeting.

I hope you find this information helpful. Please do not hesitate to call or email with questions or concerns. There will be a few tele-conferences in the coming months.

Thank you again for volunteering!!