U.S. Ambassador visits Walter Read Hospital Medical Mission performing Reconstructive Surgery with Dominican Armed Forces specialists

United States Ambassador, James Brewster visited on Wednesday March 19 the Armed Forces Central Hospital facilities where the “Annual Medical Readiness Training Exercise” is conducted for its ninth year with Walter Reed National Military Center and Armed Forces Central Hospital physicians performing free reconstructive plastic surgery for patients in Dominican Republic.

The Medical Readiness Training Exercises (MEDRETE), which began on March 9 through March 20th, aims to provide free surgical services to more than 80 patients with limited financial resources throughout the country. Doctors will be conducting patient screenings prior to surgery until Thursday, March 20.

The medical exercise involves more than 70 professionals, including plastic surgeons, therapists, orthopedists, anesthesiologists, and pediatricians from the Unites States and Dominican Republic performing a variety of surgical procedures including: reconstruction of cleft lips, cleft palate, jaw surgery, facial and cranial deformities, and hands deformities caused at birth or trauma. The Central Hospital of the Armed Forces will provide free post-operative care, medications and follow-up on patients benefiting from surgeries during the medical exercise.

General Mayra Duval Mancebo, Armed Forces Central Hospital Director and Perinatology Pediatrician, expressed her appreciation for the Walter Reed Hospital ongoing support, explaining how these medical exercises and surgeries not only benefit the most impoverished groups in the country, specifically military and civilians, but also serve as valuable training for the Armed Forces medical staff.

The Walter Reed surgical team is headed by Lieutenant Commander Patrick Basile and Dr. Guillermo Saenz; the Armed Forces Central Hospital medical team is headed by Capitan Reynaldo Aramis Vega, also head of the Armed Forces Plastic Surgery Department.

This Medical Readiness Training Exercise is at the request of the Dominican government, developed with the support of the Armed Forces Central Hospital, and the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Defense.