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Medical volunteers from South Florida to visit Bustamante Hospital for Children in Jamaica – October 5th, 2006

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A team of 13 medical professional volunteers of the Florida-based community health organization, Caribbean Heart Menders Association, will pay a two-day visit to the Bustamante Children’s Hospital in Kingston, that began Thursday, October 5.

The trip is part of the group’s annual visit to the health institution to perform pediatric cardio-vascular surgery. However, during this visit, the team will meet with the hospital’s medical team to look at ways to provide additional health care, education and training in the field of pediatric heart care for children in the region fighting congenital and acquired heart disease.

The team will be led by Dr. Jeff Jacobs, Jamaican national, and heart surgeon at the Congenital Heart Institute of Florida in St. Petersburg.

Since 1994, some 220 children have benefited from heart surgeries performed by medical volunteers of the Association, as they continued their health mission throughout the Caribbean region in Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Guyana and Trinidad.

Simultaneously, an additional 37 children from the Caribbean also received similar surgical care at the Joe DiMaggio Hospital in Hollywood, Florida, when members of the Association took on their first mission.

Members also contributed almost US$100,000 to complete the new surgical wing at the Bustamante Hospital in 2003. During that mission, 10 children also benefited from pediatric cardio-vascular heart surgery at the new facility.

During the exploratory visit, the team will also meet with officials from the Ministry of Health.

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