Mission Trip to Guatemala

The Organizers, Fletch and Tommy

Two weeks ago in April, I attended a dental mission trip in Tejar, Guatemala. The goal for the clinic was to provide free extractions to persons who had failing teeth but no means of treating them. Drs. Tommy Murph and Gayle Fletcher are highly skilled at dental surgery and provided guidance and support to the doctors in the clinic.  Their efforts allowed approximately 480 people to be seen and treated in four days.

The group consisted of dentists from as far away as Australia! The first day surgical techniques were reviewed with about 10 hours of lecture. The following day we moved to Antigua, to have a shorter drive to Tejar. Under Drs. Murph and Fletcher’s guidance Set up and breakdown each took about four hours.

About 36 dentists under the leadership of Drs. Murph and Fletcher set up a portable dental clinic in a municipal auditorium. The logistics for setting up a trip like this are daunting. Getting everyone into Guatemala City, arranging transportation, inventorying local equipment and materials, and being sure the additional materials needed were brought into Guatemala. Additionally, permissions to proceed with the clinic had to be obtained. With 36 dentists arriving at different times Dr. Murph did a great herding this cluster of cats.

An excellent program, glad to have been part of it!