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Your Healthy Family: Many groups making free hand surgery day possible

Posted at 1:02 PM, Sep 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-09-12 15:06:44-04

COLORADO SPRINGS – Dr. Jeffry Watson is one of the hand surgeons in Colorado Springs who is participating in and helped organize the free hand surgery day coming in October we told you about last week (see story here).  Dr. Watson knew to make something like this happen he would need the volunteer help of many other groups and medical professionals.

Dr. Watson says, “As far as providers go myself, Dr. Cassidy and some of the other hand surgeons here in Colorado Springs are willing to provide their time and expertise but we can’t do things in a van in the parking lot.”

Dr. Jonathan Epperson is an anesthesiologist volunteering his time and expertise to the free hand surgery day.  He is also the medical director at the Orthopaedic and Spine Center of Southern Colorado where the free surgeries will happen.

Dr. Epperson says the staff at the surgery center were eager to volunteer.  “There was no difficulty in getting our people to volunteer. The operating room staff, nurses, anesthesiologists, recovery room managers and nurses and staff, really everyone from top to bottom.  It’s not an overseas mission trip but it’s helping people here in our community that otherwise would not be able to do this.”

Dr. Watson explains the needed staff goes beyond that of the surgery center.  “What you don’t see in the background is expertise from providers such as pathologists.  When we have tumors or lumps that we take out we have to have somebody help us look at those.”

That’s where UCHealth Memorial is stepping in.  Kerry Linenberger is the lab manager at UCHealth Memorial who says, “Part of our vision is improving lives, and how better can we do that, than to assist with a free surgery day for some of the underserved members of our community.  If the surgeon identifies and lesion or a growth during the surgery he can submit it to us, and we’ll process it. Our pathologists will be determining if more samples are needed or they will make a diagnosis that can help the physician and patient make a treatment decision.”

This year’s free hand day is full and no longer accepting patients. For more information about any future free surgery days call Joshua Heermans with CSOG at 719-622-4546.

UCHealth Memorial is a proud sponsor of Your Healthy Family