Career dentist Dr Avis Kelly, a graduate of Howard University Dental School, is leading a 10-person medical team to Guyana and is attached to the Leonora Hospital, West Coast Demerara and the Suddie Hospital, Essequibo Coast.
Kelly and her team are from Helping Hand Health Ministries and the 7 Days Baptist Church.
The team consist of three dentists, two physicians, two nurses and the supporting staff.
According to the Ministry of Health, this is Helping Hand Health Ministries’ maiden trip to Guyana and they want young, aspiring, local health professionals ‘fired up’ about the field of dentistry.
As a result, they have teamed up six University of Guyana (UG) second to third year students – Rehana Fareed, Natasha Alladin, Gavrielle Cave, Jalana Hartman, Kevin Henry and David Adams -from the School of Medicine and Dentistry to help achieve their purpose.
“As a native of the Caribbean I have always had a passion to give back to the Caribbean people” Kelly said. She hopes that their effort will be “well received and the needs of the people be met”.
Kelly, from Jamaica, has been carrying out Health Mission Outreaches for over 30 years as a graduatein 1979 from the Howard University Dental School in Washington DC where she resides.
Kelly and her team use their annual summer vacation to visit different Caribbean countries to carry out medical missions. Guyanese can expect blood pressure screening, diabetic screening and dental care from the team during their stay here, Kelly said.
“The primary message is for persons to practice better health care by eating the required foods, drinking enough water, and utilising all the good nutrients that are available with the right moderation,” Dr Kelly counselled.
Peola Marks, a Dentex Practitioner attached to the Lenora Hospital is elated to be working with the experienced team and sees this as an opportunity to garner fresh insight into her chosen field.“Dentistry has been my passion for many years and I’m grateful for this opportunity to expound on my knowledge in the field”, Mark said.
David Adams one of the UG students on attachment at the hospital noted that it is his “first time” participating in the practical aspects of dental care. Like Marks, he too is looking forward to the remaining days working along with the group since the experience gained will be “very beneficial” to him and his colleagues.
The team is scheduled to leave Guyana on July 28.