December 2017 Trip Report


December clinic -

Because we were close to the Christmas holiday, there was some concern we might have a light patient turnout for our Lopez Mateos clinic, but I’m pleased to report that was not the case.  Unfortunately, though, the logistics would not support a clinic at LSI clinic this month.  Also, we were without the Aeromedicos  and I think that had a good deal to do with the fires in the Santa Barbara area and the possible need to evacuate.   I just got the picture at the bottom of this report from Aeromedico John Grube that was taken from his Santa Barbara home.  I can see why there was concern! 

My airplane made the trip direct to Lopez on Friday and we got some needed repairs completed.  That included the back door that has been a real bear to get open and closed.    We also had the chance to go through the dental stations so that things were functioning pretty well when the dental team arrived on Saturday morning.  I had the pleasure of reporting to our crew at Serenidad that Saturday morning’s weather at Lopez was severe clear and they should bring it on!  I think going forward we will have a plane direct to Lopez on Friday for a while. It really helps during these short months to get a running start on Saturday Morning. 

Anyone betting  on which discipline would be last to finish on Saturday would have probably lost the bet.  I hear you saying of course it was dental or dental hygiene.  Good guess, but wrong!  How about optical?  No, our lone chiropractor was in very high demand and was, by a bit, the last to finish.  I don’t have a patient count for chiropractic at this time, but I’ll bet it was impressive.  Second to last crossing the finish line was optical and that included a procedure to relieve a really nasty stye that a young man had under his right eye.  This gentlemen was optical’s  last patient and was number 20.  Reading glasses were fitted for an additional 25, though it was reported that the actual count was likely higher.  Dental and dental hygiene ended their day the third from last to finish. Our three dentists relieved the dental problems of 27 patients and I understand many were quit involved including one patient who required six fillings.  Our dental hygienist and a local together improved the oral health of 14 patients.  Our general medical doctor saw 14 patients, our pediatric nurse practitioner saw 4, our Ob/Gyn nurse practitioner saw 7 and the pharmacy filled 68 prescriptions.

As is traditional, Santa handed out backpacks to the children, or in many cases the grandchildren, of the employees of Hotel Serenidad.  We really appreciate Donna Brown’s efforts to purchase the backpacks and the goodies inside and to assemble everything to be ready for distribution.  After Santa was the tradition piñata and the scramble for the candy that followed.  It was nice that these events were postponed until Saturday night instead of the usual Friday night so we all could enjoy. 

The weather was a little challenging for the return trip, but our pilot’s various solutions all ended very successfully.  I had planned to clear US customs through Nogales, but instead diverted to Tucson.  It revealed  something that probably requires more vigilance on our part.  The customs agents there were quite strict about declaring all food brought back into the US.  Many things are allowed, but all food needs to be declared on the customs card (that is check ‘yes’ on that question on the entry card) and luggage may be subject to inspection.  I think going forward it would be good for us all to keep any food together in one place, maybe a baggy, so a random inspection doesn’t turn up something that was forgotten. 

Next month’s clinic will be January 19 -21.  I hope you all enjoy this holiday season!  See you soon.