Tuesday – October 29th Visit from Ambassador

October 31, 2013 § Leave a comment

Post by Eileen Asahi



Today we were honored by the visit of the American Ambassador to Armenia, John A. Heffern. He came to show his support of the work we are doing, and to offer his heartfelt thanks and encouragement not only for the surgeries we are performing, but for the teaching and collaboration with the Armenian doctors and staff.


Armenian Baby Before and After Photos

October 31, 2013 § Leave a comment

Armenian Baby Before and After - Plasticos Armenian Baby Before and After - Plasticos

Before and After photos of one of the first babies operated on in Armenia by Dr. Horowitz. The patient had a bilateral cleft lip repair.

Quick thoughts from screening day

October 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

Post by Dennis Gertmenian

We have interviewed and examined over 100 children. All the children are very cute. But the children from the orphanages are very special. We have found that the orphanage caregivers are very loving and kind.

Our Team mates Bob and Ruth Ann Burns with a nun from the Mother Teresa Order in Armenia.

International Plastic Surgery Symposium in Armenia

October 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

International Symposium in Armenia

A number of the Plasticos Team Members presented information at an International Plastic Surgery Symposium.

In the photo above, Dr. Horowitz gives a lecture about Plasticos Foundation, and discusses their past mission to Armenia in 2011. The photo displays from left to right: Susi Gertmenian (one of the Trip Coordinators) an Armenian patient, and Monica Karamian (one of the Recovery Room Nurses).

Monday – October 28th First day of surgery

October 29, 2013 § Leave a comment


From Monica Karamian, Recovery Room Nurse


One of the most important aspects of pediatric care is what happens after the child leaves the hospital. In order to make sure all post op instructions are understood by the families, education is started in recovery room by the recovery room nurses.  After everything is explained step by step, the families are asked to make notes so that they can refer back to those notes in the future in their own handwriting.  Basically there is a difference with the degree of education and  socio-economic condition of many of our patients.  All the Armenian recovery room nurses are very involved in this process. They take ownership of educating families.

Sunday, October 27th – Patient Screening Day

October 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

Post by Eileen Asahi

We have 98 children on our list to screen for this weeks surgeries.   Most likely, we will be able to do 50-80 surgeries within the timeframe that we have.  Patients are scheduled to arrive either at 9am, 11am or 1pm.  We have our stations all set up and are ready to go by 8:45.


Most children arrive with 4 or 5 family members so this is a big challenge to move 400-500 people through the screening process.  We have a wonderful group of volunteer translators from Birthright Foundation who are each assigned to a family as they move through the process.


Lucy Unanyan and Ani Nina Oganyan

IMG_0011 2

Mira Mitri and Seda Abgaryan

It took an hour or two to fine tune our system, but things run as smoothly as can be expected.

Many families have come from long distances, one of them drove 8 hours to get to the hospital.  We hope that this child will be a good candidate for surgery this week.  There are children brought from the orphanages by Dr. Suzy Voskanyan.

The day went by quickly but we were all exhausted after the last patient has gone through.  Now it is time for the surgeons and staff to decide the week’s surgery schedule.  The doctors review each case and put names on a board, moving them around to schedule so that the youngest children are the first cases of the day, the cleft surgeries are also early in the day so they can check for any bleeding before leaving at the end of the day.


Saturday, October 26 – Set up at Hospital

October 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

Post by Eileen Asahi



Irene, Ho, Rachel, Dr. Horowitz, Monica, and Dr. Burns setting up OR supply room.

OR Supply Room 2

OR Supply Room All Set Up!

We planned on all of our medical supplies being delivered at 10 am at the hospital after clearing customs.  Unfortunately, there was a bit of difficulty going through customs but our host was kind enough to give us the assistance we needed to get all of our bags cleared through and delivered to the hospital by 3pm.    The nurses set up a supply room with all of the medicines, sutures, and supplies needed for the surgeries this week.


Rob Barry

Rob is busy setting up WiFi system that hopefully will work with our new electronic medical software program for the patient screening day.  The goal is that the four stations (Check In,  Plastic Surgeon Screening, Pediatrician Screening and Anesthesiologist Screening) will be able to enter the information on the computers and it will all sync so that we will not need a lot of paperwork which sometimes is lost along the way.   Rob worked with Haik from the hospital and everything looks good. Cross our fingers for tomorrow.  It will be a busy day!