With a population of nearly 102 million and a birth rate of 24 per 1,000, congenital heart disease (CHD) is a significant health concern in the Philippines. Annually, 20,000 children with CHD are born in the Philippines and one out of four of those patients dies due to lack of medical treatment. According to the World Health Organization, CHD is currently the fourth leading cause of death in Filipino children under the age of five.
A multidisciplinary team from Duke University Health System (DUHS), led by Dr. Andrew Lodge, returned to the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC) on April 18 for their fifth cardiac surgery mission. During their trip, the team successfully completed ten open heart operations on children with a variety of congenital heart defects. Duke Anesthesiology’s Dr. Kelly Machovec and Emily Funk, CRNA, participated in the provision of anesthetic care for the children. Diagnoses treated on this surgical mission included total anomalous pulmonary venous connection, ventricular septal defects, atrial septal defects, patent ductus arteriosus, tetralogy of fallot, and A-V septal defect.
Additional team members from the DUHS included pediatric cardiologist, Dr. Stephen Miller, perfusionists, Greg Smigla and Sam Kaiser, respiratory therapist, Amy Zinn, intensivists, Dr. Jen Turi and Jean Koo NP, OR nurses, Michelle Figurerres and Keiza Clerigo, and ICU nurses, Karen Osborne, Amanda Litton, Amanda Hodges, Leigh Pedersen and Shelly Stock.