Kettering Health Network hosted Hand Day Dayton on September 23, in which network doctors operated on five patients from the Dayton community free of charge. This event was in partnership with the American Society of Surgery for the Hand and the Touching Hands Project.
The procedures were available to qualifying patients without insurance. Kettering Health Network encouraged patients who might be eligible to apply, and informed physicians so that they could speak with their patients that fit the description.
On August 21, the network hosted a walk-in evaluation day for patients to determine if their diagnosis confirmed them as a candidate for an operation.
Doctors who operated on Hand Day include Brent Bamberger, DO; Adam Dann, DO; Emily Tan, DO, Ryan Tarr, DO, and hand fellows Ron Buzcek, DO, and Dan Lygrisse, DO. Maureen Leist, MD, and Renee McClain, CRNA, were the anesthesia team for each procedure.
“It went very well,” says Dr. Bamberger, who specializes in hand and elbow surgery. “The day itself was streamlined—everyone jumped in to help.”
Dr. Bamberger has participated in many mission trips with several other physicians and nurses to places like Guatemala and Paraguay. While those trips were valuable and a big help for many, Dr. Bamberger was excited to see this concept implemented closer to home.
“Every time we would go, we wondered why we couldn’t also do this for our own,” Dr. Bamberger says.
That’s when he involved resident physician Emily Tan who took on this initiative as a project for her residency. The Touching Hands Project identified Kettering Health Network’s Southview Medical Center as a location that would be available to host this project.
Kettering Health Network was the first in Ohio to perform these free procedures through the touching hands project, though other Ohio cities have already pledged their participation. The network hopes to involve other cities and specialties in its initiative in future years.