FDOC welcomes the addition of Ms. Tammy Hardie, Julena Foglia and Dr. Amadeo Ramirez to our staff. Tammy will be assuming the role of Chief Officer of Medical Diagnositcs and Dr. Ramirez will be joining us as our Chief of Salvadoran Operations . Ms Julena will assume the the role of DOT Program Coordinator. We are very pleased to have all of them on board!
Over the past several years, FDOC has striven to provide better care under the extremely difficut conditions that we work in. Most recently, we have expanded our diagnostic capabilities with the addition of two endoscopes and a high-definition EndoGo image acquisition system. This equipment will enable us to to perform pharyngoscopy, bronchoscopy, gatroscopy and limited colonoscopy.
Thanks to the generosity of Sonosite Inc. in the US, we now have the ability to obtain ulltrasonographic images of the internal organs and other strucures in order to further diagnose and characterize disease states and monitor pregnancy in the womb.
For several years now, FDOC has been dependent on borrowing i-STAT Systems from Abbott on first-come-first-serve basis which has left us without on several ocassions. Thanks to the generosity of our donors we have recently been able to purchase 2 of these units for our use. Similar in demensions to a letter-sized envelope, these devices are extremely portable and are ideal for use in remote settings, allowing us to perform immediate and sophisticated laboratory testing under very challenging conditions.
Over the past 5 years, FDOC has worked tirelessly to improve on our capability in the field, bringing more sophisticated diagnostics and treatment to needy communities around the world. To be certain, there have been signficant challenges along the way, but the resolve of our teams to adapt and overcome these challenges has led to continued success and growth year after year. In these respects 2012 was no exception, proving to be one of our most challenging years yet with back to back trips to Haiti and El Salvador in close succession. Our projects in Haiti contintue to be extremely challenging with more than 300 patients attending clinics each day, some with extremely serious illness that pushed the limits of our abilities in the field. Desptie this, we successfully diagnosed and treated over 1200 people. In large part, this success was due to improved surgical equipment and a wider selection of medications to use. Simiilarly, our project in El Salvador continues to improve as we expand our abilities to diagnose and treat more and more difficult illensses. This has been due in large part to SonoSite's donation of portable Ultrasound scanner to our imgaging department which has allowed us to provide maternity services for expectant mothers more rapidly and accurately than ever before. The addition of an Ultrasound Technologist to our team of professionals has been invaluable and we are very grateful to Jim Sawchyn for his role in making much of this possible.
All of this would not be possible without the ongoing support of our donors and the countless volunteers that work tirelessly behind the scenes, including our entirely voluntary Board of Directors. We would also like to extend a special thank you to all of our partners including Health Partners International of Canada (HPIC), Dr. Antonio Hernandez (FUDECOM), Monte Short (Los Medicos Volodares) and Michael Marcotte (Imagine Nation Foundation) as well as all of our donors for their support over the past year. We would could not do what we do without the support of Canadians, so thank you! Finally, we would like express our gratitude to Ryan Williamson who traveled with us on several occasions and voluntarily worked endless hours in the background to capture and document our work on film for the purposes of raising support and awareness for our cause. His first documentary in a series of several to come may be viewed online via the link below.Click here to view the FDOC Documentary now
Thanks to the ongoing cooperation of our Salvadoran partners we have been successful in locating a site for the new FDOC Centro de Salud. Plans for purchase, land preparation and construction are moving forward and we hope to have a permanent location from which to base ongoing and future projects by the end of 2013.
At the present time our plans involve the construction of a simple health centre which will provide free medical and surgical services, including the provision of free medicines. The construction plan is a multi-part project which is planned for completion in 2014. It is our sincere hope that our donors will continue to support our efforts to make this beacon of hope a reality for the Salvadoran people who so desperately need it. It is our plan to reiterate this design in serveral locations around the world including SE Haiti and NE South Africa.
Unfortunately, property acquisition in El Salvador has been a long and difficult process that seems to be coming to an end. We hope to finally begin construction in 2013! This is the first step in our plan to bring sustainable solutions to the Salvadoran people... the first step of many.
In April of 2012 we traveled to southeastern Haiti for the second time since 2010 and carried through on our promise to bring back more help for the desperate people in the Southeastern Department. What we encountered there is difficult to describe and left all of us wanting to do much more. As such, we will be returning to this region of Haiti in the spring of 2013 and offering free clinics in several communities surrounding Cascade Pichon. This is a "Professionals Only" trip and we are unable to accomodate students and/or general volunteers.
We will be returning to Izalco, El Salvador with our usual large team of 30-40 volunteers including our student volunteers in July of 2013. Applications for non-student volunteers are now being accepted. Application deadlines for all DOT Programs have now passed.