By Ana Luna, ReSurge’s Development and Communications Manager
In early March, I traveled with one of ReSurge International’s surgical teams for the first time. We flew from ReSurge’s Silicon Valley headquarters to Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
As a non-doctor, I watched shows like ER, General Hospital and Grey’s Anatomy to help me prepare. Inundated with cable channel dramatizations of cutting, suctioning and suturing, it was easy for me to imagine doctors performing surgeries. However, picturing ReSurge’s volunteer surgeons, nurses and doctors in the dynamic Ho Chi Minh City landscape, was more of a challenge.
Sensing my uncertainty, on the first day, Team Leader Dr. Bill McClure explained,
“Every trip is unique. We are blessed to be given this opportunity to help so many patients and families and share our knowledge and expertise.” As a longtime ReSurge volunteer plastic surgeon (This Ho Chi Minh City trip was Bill’s 43rd Trip with ReSurge, his 13th in Vietnam.), Bill’s perspective carried substantial weight.
Still, I wondered, “Shar[ing] knowledge and expertise,” what does that really mean? More specifically, what does sharing knowledge and expertise look like when you are working in a foreign country, namely Vietnam?
For ReSurge, sharing knowledge and expertise spans across the operating room. I saw pediatricians, anesthesiologists, nurses and surgeons all engaged with hospital staff-sharing ideas and techniques.