Lima, Peru - January, 2023

Ryan and child before surgeryHealing the Children Rocky Mountains returned Jan 8-13th, 2023 for our 9th mission to Lima, Peru. This was a very special mission because it was the first time we could return since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Waiting 3 long years to visit again and help these amazing people has been very difficult. On top of that, there has been a lot of political unrest in Peru this year and we thought we were going to have to cancel the mission for safety reasons. Many of the children’s parents were very nervous that we wouldn’t come, and this after having waited so long because of COVID.

So, when we first arrived in the beautiful courtyard of Dos de Mayo Hospital on screening day and met with the patients and their families, it was pure joy! The parents were so grateful that finally, their children would get the help they desperately needed. And our team members were overjoyed to be able to help again interact with these amazing people. Every team member felt so dedicated to helping as many children as possible because there was such a need, that we worked really long hours.

Despite having a much smaller team during our one-week mission, we accomplished the following:

We operated on 64 children and performed 68 surgical procedures with 2 surgeons.

273 pairs of glasses were prescribed, fitted, and purchased. The local school districts in Lima screen children throughout the year and then bus them in. We get brand new designer frames donated in the U.S. and then our optometrists perform an exam. The children pick out frames they like and then we pay a local lens maker to make custom lenses (typically $1-$5.) Then the kids get a brand-new pair of glasses that they got to pick out 2 days later. Pretty awesome!

65 hearing aids were fitted and given. These are patients (mostly children) with mild to severe hearing loss. We have trained the hospital staff on how to provide replacement batteries, and replacement parts, and help program them.

78 sessions of speech therapy and feeding sessions were performed.

During the week we were able to help over 480 children!

These are truly our Peruvian brothers and sisters. They are individuals who have hopes and dreams and families. (Read about Mileny, a 4-month-old girl that lives in the remote highlands of Peru and traveled 3 days to get the surgery she needed.) With your generous help these past years, we have helped improve the lives of thousands of Peruvians. We will return to Lima in November of 2023.

~ Ryan F. Brown MD, FACS - Medical Director, HTCRM

Above photo, Dr. Ryan Brown with patient pre-surgery.