Dr. John Thomas and a team of medical and humanitarian volunteers completed a medical mission to the Kurdish region of Iraq in March.
“Our team arrived in Irbil Iraq and were met by patients who were carrying their medical records and requesting our assistance,” Dr. Thomas said.
This was the eighth trip Dr. Thomas and Operation HOPE have made to Iraq. Over the years, the focus has been to train Iraqi doctors and increase the medical capabilities and capacity in Iraq.
“During our first visits, they were not trained in laparoscopic surgery, but with the support and ongoing training of our teams, today Iraqi doctors are now proficient in a number of laparoscopic procedures. Operation HOPE supporters are making a real difference in the lives of people in Northern Iraq.”
Seventy-three surgeries were completed during this year’s trip. “The need for advanced medical procedures are great. With the Operation HOPE team, we are able not only help with the need but also train the physicians in advanced care,” said Dr. Thomas.
This trip saw the completion of the first liver transplant in Northern Iraq, and one of the first in the entire country. This procedure was completed by Operation HOPE physicians.