Season’s Greetings Flying Samaritans,

The December Clinic trip took place on December 17th at Puerto Adolfo Lopez Mateos.  We provided a staff of general medicine, a pediatrician, obstetrician/gynecology, dental hygienist, a dentist, chiropractors, interpreters and two pharmacists.  This resulted in 102 services provided to patients and 52 prescriptions were dispensed.  Our overall numbers were lower than usual most likely due to very cold weather and proximity to the Christmas holiday.  The help of two locals, Oliver and Símon, was much appreciated in running a well organized clinic.

It should be noted that the local cannery, under the direction of Juan Manuel Icedo Ojeda, made the necessary repairs that Charlie Brown had noted on a previous trip, including a beam repair to the patient area roof and some electrical wiring.  Additionally, they added a shade to the back patio area.  Also with regard to the cannery, Charlie Brown, Judith Logan, Juan Manuel and I attended a meeting with the general manager, Ingeniero Humberto Chavez Ayala, to share our suggestions and their plans for a new clinic building located on the cannery property nearby.  The planning stages have begun and we shall see how this moves along with time.  Meanwhile, we remain grateful for the cannery support that is provided to our clinic.

As usual, Guillermo and Andrea provided another delicious lunch for our volunteers and the direct to Lopez plane enjoyed a tamale dinner provided by Judith on Friday evening.

I would also like to extend thanks to Chuck Schroll who aided our Pilot Coordinator by providing an extra plane for this trip.  Thank you to Tim Reynolds and Tom Greninger from the Tucson Samaritans, not only for the transportation, but also for help with repairs at the clinic and Santa help at the children’s Christmas party.  Thanks also to the Aeromédicos support of John Grube, Terry Harris, Kaio Miatti and Toni Riparreti.

Each Christmas we and the Hotel Serenidad sponsor a children’s Christmas party for the children of the hotel staff.  Alma, the Hotel Manager, is  instrumental in organizing the affair and we provide the gift backpacks for the children.  It was heartwarming to see the looks on the childrens’ faces to see Santa, and Santa’s helper, Karen Guthrie, call their names and pass out the gifts.  Tonie Delgado’s enthusiastic help to get things started was invaluable.

Our next clinic is scheduled for January 21, 2023.  Please contact your coordinator as soon as possible if you are available for this trip.  Also, we need dentist volunteers, so if you know any dentists who might be interested, let us know.

One final comment:  It has been with the help of so many of you that we have had a successful return to our clinics this last year following the pandemic.  The volunteers in this group never cease to amaze me with their dedication to our mission.

Happy New Year!

Bonnie Lassen