Screening day for Operation Smile

We left the Chulalongkorn Hospital in Bangkok, a van filled with surgeons, anaesthesiologists, scrub nurses and me. Great spirit, atmosphere filled with laughters and joy. The trip is quite long up to Mae Sot, count about 6 hours, and all the stops, Thai people HAVE to eat and I promise you, they would eat all the time if they could….

We arrived late afternoon at the  Centara Mae Sot Hill Resort, I like these old fashioned hotels, where time almost stands still since the 80s’??. We called it a early night because of the long, long day after….. for the screening. Screening is the day when the doctors see all the future patients, medical check ups, filling out documents and scheduling. As someone from the outside observing this work, I was amazed about the efficiency and the patience and everything proceeded in serenity and peace. All the other days after were all….as well, very long, tiring and tremendously rewarding….140 surgical operations, with days that starts at 8.00 am and finishes about 12.00 am.  The people coming for the surgeries, suffer most of cleft lip and palate, but you will even see operations taking place with people suffering difficult burn wounds. The people coming to the Mae Sot mission are mostly Karen people who live along the Burma – Thai border.

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