In many areas of the world, people don’t have access to the same care that we have in the United States. Having a life-changing operation in these places is simply not an option. Many countries have poor healthcare, and even in countries that provide healthcare to their citizens, physicians don’t have access to training to provide specialty care like joint replacements. Implants are often not available, medical providers don’t have training and therefore these people are left to live a life of pain and disability.
This lack of access to joint replacement has a trickle-down effect much greater than just dealing with the pain of disabling arthritis.
The joy that walking again can bring is priceless.
In May 2019 the Operation Walk Carolinas team will embark on a mission to provide specialty hip and knee surgeries to people in Panama who desperately need them. In countries where people have little or no access to certain kinds of medical care, it can mean life with painful arthritis, in a wheelchair, or in a bed. In many cases, the inability to walk means families can’t make a living.
Joint replacement surgeries allow patients to go back to work, help provide for their families, and have a richer quality of life. They can enable a grandmother to spend quality time with her grandchildren, a father to put a roof over his family’s head, or a mother to stand and hold her child.
In Panama we will work alongside local medical staff for a common goal: to help restore the basic function of walking to those who cannot.
Two billion people across the globe have no access to medical care. They make up 35% of the world’s population but only 3.5% of surgeries take place in their countries. Many patients in lesser-developed countries have no access to fund costly operations. Oftentimes there are few trained surgeons and/or access to implants and other medical devices. OpWalk Carolinas is changing that.
Bryan Springer, MD is the medical director and co-founder of Operation Walk Carolinas. He is an Orthopaedic Surgeon at the OrthoCarolina Hip and Knee Center in Charlotte, NC specializing in adult reconstruction (joint replacement) of the Hip and Knee. He currently serves as the Fellowship Director at the Hip and Knee Center. He is actively involved in research, education and is a member of the American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons, The Hip Society, The Knee Society and is President of the Musculoskeletal Infection Society. Dr. Springer has been involved in Operation Walk for 2 years. He accompanied Operation Walk Denver on 2 mission trips to Panama. It was during those trips that he realized how important it was to provide access to joint replacements to patients who would otherwise have no access to this life changing operation. “Our team is committed to providing this care to the less fortunate in third world countries. I am excited to have such a talented team participate in this mission.”
Chris Petrie works with Crosslink/Stryker Orthopaedics in Charlotte, NC. He, along with a number of his Operation Walk Carolinas teammates have had the opportunity to join the Operation Walk Denver team on two recent missions to Panama. In his nearly 19 years in the Orthopaedic device industry he can tell you these trips have been the most rewarding experiences in his professional career. As a team member he is responsible for securing the implants and instruments utilized in the hip and knee replacement procedures. “Cuba….here we come!”
Kristi Sylvester has been an RN with Carolinas healthcare system for 10 years. She graduated with her bachelors degree from the University of Akron and moved to Charlotte soon after. She has been in the operating room 9 years and absolutely loves what she does. This is going to be her first trip with Op Walk and she is very excited to be apart of the team. She looks forward to all that will come from this experience and the knowledge she will contribute but also gain as well. When not at work she loves playing with her sweet pitbull Jax.
Susan Conard has been a physical therapist for 25 years. She currently works for Atrium Healthcare in the acute care setting, where there is a strong emphasis on post-operative orthopedics.
Tammy has been an orthopeadic inpatient nurse for over 17 years taking care of postoperative patients. She actually found out that she passed her nursing boards on 9/11 and took this as a sign that nursing was her true calling and to do whatever was needed to help take care of as many people as possible in a nursing capacity.
Amy is the Director for Preoperative Services for Carolinas Health and has 20+ years of preoperative clinical and management experience spanning from positions in the operating room, surgical services, PACU, Business Management, Ambulatory Surgery Director of Nursing and most recently Preoperative Director for Carolinas Medical Center Mercy.
Stacy has been a Registered Nurse for nine years and has been working in the OR environment for three and a half years.
Michael is an orthopedic surgeon from Boston, MA specializing in hip and knee replacement surgery...
Meryn is a CRNA with Atrium Health and Novant Health. She has been in practice for 10 years. Her anesthesia focus areas are hepatobiliary surgery, liver and kidney transplants, and orthopedic surgery.
It typically costs $150,000+ to get our team of 20+ to another country with the right equipment and supplies for one trip. Here is how your generous funds may be used for our mission. Any donation small or large is appreciated.
- $5,000 Supplies critical medical equipment for the Operation Walk Team
- $2,500 Fully supports one joint replacement for a patient
- $1,000 Fully supports travel for a volunteer medical team member
- $500 Covers the cost of Physical Therapy for five patients
- $250 Covers all diagnostic tests (X-rays, etc.) for a patient having surgery
- $100 Covers one night in the hospital $50 Provides a walker for a patient after joint replacement
- $50 Provides a walker for a patient after joint replacement $50 Provides a walker for a patient after joint replacement
- $25 Covers transportation for the patient to and from the hospital
These trips are 100% voluntary and the entire mission is based on fundraising. Choose a team member to receive your generous gift or donate where it is needed most. Any donation small or large is appreciated and we thank you in advance for your contribution.