Fly Fishing Surgeon Volunteers on Christmas Island
Good hearted general surgeon Dr. Larry Falk, from Ukiah Valley Medical Center in Ukiah, California, has added new dimensions to our medical team visits to the isolated nation of Kiribati in the central Pacific by concentrating on improving infrastructure at the small hospital on Christmas Island, as well as being available for emergency surgeries.
“Dr. Falk has volunteered his services to Pacific Islands Medical Aid, Inc. (PIMA) in Kiribati more times than any other physician,” said Carlton Smith, PIMA president, “and continues to be willing to help these good people in any way he can.”
In his most recent visit, Dr. Falk took with him two associates to help identify, repair and maintain vital equipment at the small hospital on Christmas Island (Kiritimati) by working with the bio-medical technician there. “This is a daunting task in a remote and harsh physical environment, but vital to the successful diagnosis and treatment of islanders there,” Dr. Falk said.
“It takes more than just medical personnel to make it happen,” he said. Here is Dr. Falk’s description of his most recent trip. He will be returning to Kiritimati in late November and December for a little fly fishing and a lot of medical assistance.
By Dr. Larry Falk, MD
With the support of the Kiribati Ministry of Health, Pacific Islands Medical Aid, Inc. and our hospital, Ukiah Valley Medical Center in Ukiah, California, a PIMA team of general surgeon Dr. Larry Falk, chief of biotechnology Jack Smiley and chief computer systems engineer John Reilly, spent a productive week working with the staff at the small, isolated Ronton Hospital on Christmas Island in Kiribati.
While we were there to offer general surgery support, a main focus was to partner with the new local biotechnician to review every piece of vital equipment and every computer to develop repair and maintenance procedures.
This is a daunting task in a remote and harsh physical environment such as exists on this beautiful coral atoll.