Twelve patients at the Bustamante Hospital for Children, in Kingston will get a new lease on life as they are recipients of cardiovascular pediatric surgery being performed during this week by a team of heart specialists from Florida.
The team consists of 21 medical, paramedical and administrative professionals, headed by Dr. Jeffrey Jacobs from St. Petersburg Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg, Florida are currently on a one-week medical mission to Jamaica which began on Monday (Mar. 31). The Florida group will work with Dr. Lambert Ennis of the Bustamante Hospital.
According to President Winsome Charlton of South Florida, so far, the pediatric patients have all returned to a normal life after successful operations.
The group of volunteers is coordinated by the Caribbean HeartMenders Association (CHMA), a Florida-based non-profit organization who have been performing life-saving surgeries during medical missions throughout the Caribbean region since 1994.
The CHMA recently raised over $100,000 (US) to assist in the completion of a new pediatric cardiac intensive care unit at that hospital in Kingston. As the first pediatric cardiac center in the region, all pediatric cardiovascular surgeries across the area are now performed there.
Since its establishment, members of the organization have provided more than 220 surgeries successfully to children suffering from congenital and acquired heart defects in several countries across the Caribbean including the Dominican Republic, Dominica, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, Haiti and Jamaica.
The group completes their medical mission on Friday (Apr. 4).