Rising second-year student Emmagene Worley was part of a 19-member team of volunteer physicians, surgeons, therapists and med students who traveled with Physicians for Peace to the West Bank, part of the Palestinian territories in the Middle East.
While on the week-long trip, Worley blogged about the experience, chronicling the types of procedures performed, the food consumed and the hospitality that met the team throughout their stay.
In a July 7 blog post, Worley described a visit to the Ramallah Hospital that is located just north of Jerusalem by about 10 miles. The team had been called in for a bilateral cleft surgery.
“The little girl was eight months old, with the biggest brown eyes we had ever seen,” wrote Worley. A surgeon with Physicians for Peace “served as a teacher to the local pediatric surgeon, sharing his techniques and advice for operating on a cleft lip. They outlined their plan in methylene blue, essentially a blue marker, and then made their cuts. To us, it looked like magic, to make a functional and normal lip and nose from just a few small incisions.”
This is Physicians for Peace’s 23rd mission to the region. The team delivered patient assessments, surgical treatment, burn care assistance and educational exchanges, introducing new skills and techniques to local health care professionals in multiple locations, including Ramallah and Hebron.
“This mission to the West Bank represents the very best of Physicians for Peace: our team is building on well established relationships even as they look forward and work alongside new friends and partners,” said Brig. Gen. Ron Sconyers (USAF, Ret.), president and CEO of Physicians for Peace. “In the same way, Emmagene represents the ideal volunteer. As an office intern last year and a student volunteer this summer, she has truly committed herself to our organization. On this mission, she’s made valuable and lasting contributions through her daily interactions and thoughtful blog updates. We’re very grateful to have her in our community of supporters.”
Physicians for Peace aims to transform lives by training, supporting and empowering health care professionals working with the world’s underserved populations. With each international trip, PFP’s teams provide in-country health care professionals with the education, training and resources to help themselves and their communities. Rather than healing just one person at a time, its teams teach others, so they in turn can heal many.
Worley is currently setting up a Physicians for Peace student group on the MCV Campus. Students who are interested in learning more about opportunities to support the organization can contact Anna Wood at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photos courtesy of Kris Giacobbe for Physicians for Peace.