ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Many people in developing countries may never have access to the quality of medical care we have here in the U.S., but thanks to two Albuquerque health professionals, dozens of people in Honduras are getting life-changing operations.
There may have been a language gap for Dr. Joshua Carothers and physician assistant Tyler Jefferson, but the language of happiness, joy and appreciation is universal.
They’re from here in Albuquerque, but they’re also helping people more than 2,000 miles away.
“To whom much is given, much is expected. I think that that’s probably the best reason for us to give of our time and resources for those who otherwise can’t provide for themselves,” said Dr. Carothers.
It took hours of traveling, long days and nights of surgeries, sometimes with no power or air conditioning.
Dr. Carothers and Jefferson, from New Mexico Orthopaedics, say it was a trip worth taking.
“When you experience adversity, it does great things for the team,” said Jefferson.
The two practitioners traveled with 55 surgeons, physician assistants and nurses from Denver as part of Operation Walk.
After four days, they treated 57 patients and did 70 joint replacements for free.
“It was an honor and pleasure to be able to help somebody who otherwise wouldn’t be able to have that,” said Jefferson.
Dr. Carothers has been volunteering with Operation Walk for about five years now.
He says Hondurans have worse deformities and much more bone loss than Americans, which makes surgeries more complex and difficult. The work provides lessons that can be brought back to the Duke City.
“Having done those cases, I can learn different techniques or working through some of those difficulties is really something I can apply in situations here taking care of patients,” said Dr. Carothers.
In addition to providing surgeries, doctors from Operation Walk took the time to train and mentor local doctors, nurses and therapists.
For more information on Operation Walk, click here.