Cho Ray Hospital, Burn Unit 2012
Surgical Volunteers International has completed its third trip to the Burn Center in Cho Ray Hospital. The team arrived in Ho Chi Minh City for patient screening on March 31st. As always we stayed at the Bat Dat Hotel which is about 15
minutes walk from the hospital.
The team consisted of 12 volunteers with 2 surgeons, 2 anesthiologists, 1 CRNA, 1 medical student, and 6 registered nurses. Everyone was from the US except for one surgeon who joined us from Egypt.
Cho Ray Hospital is the largest hospital in the South of Vietnam. It has 1700 beds and 2800 patients. The burn center had 112 patients the week were there. Some rooms had up to 10 patients with stretchers parked right next to each other.
Thirty-nine of the patients had been admitted for surgery by the SVI team and the rest were recovering from recent burns. In spite of the crowded conditions the patients all were receiving excellent care from the Vietnamesestaff. Daily baths and dressing changes were the norm. The unit is clean and tidy.
Due to a Vietnamese National holiday on Monday we did not begin operating until Tuesday. Even with the shortened week we were able to provide surgery for every candidate we screened on Saturday.
A total of 39 received life changing surgery during the week. Many patients had severe burn scar contractures of the hand that made it impossible to perform even the simplest of tasks. We also did several neck and axillary contractures.
One patient had burn scars that had left his legs in a sitting position. Hopefully he will now be able to walk.
I would like to once again thank our hosts and the Volunteers. The week was one of hard work,excellent care and compassion for those suffering from debilitating contractures.
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