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Don Daly Medical Mission comes to rural Jamaica

Published:Saturday | December 31, 2011 | 12:00 AM


Over 600 residents from rural communities in Westmoreland and St Elizabeth received free medical checks from the Don Daly Medical Mission, a 41-member team of volunteer doctors from Florida's Nova Southeastern University.

A collaboration with the Sandals Foundation, the team of opto-metrists, cardiologists, occupational therapists, nurses, pharmacists and medical students held 14 clinics treating illnesses such as diabetes, hypertension, skin and fungal infections along with other medical conditions.

More than 60 children from the Sandals Foundation-adopted Culloden Early Childhood Institution also received general check-ups and eye care during the six-day programme.

Initiated more than 11 years ago by Don Daly, a Jamaican radio host in Florida and Paula Anderson-Worts, a Jamaica-born doctor and associate professor of family medicine, the medical mission has touched the lives of thousands across the parishes of St Mary, St Ann, St Catherine, Kingston and St Andrew.

This year's mission was the first visit by the team in Westmoreland and St Elizabeth.

Several services

In addition to free health care, members of the community were also able to fill prescription and receive reading glasses from the team of optometrists and pharmacists.

"To give someone a pair of glasses means so much as you've now opened up a whole new world for that person. Some of these persons were getting their eyes tested for the first time," said Daly.

"Sandals Resorts International and now the Sandals Foundation have played an integral role in the implementation and tremendous success of this mission," he said.

He also thanked former Minister of Health Dr Peter Phillips and Dr Morais Guy in St Mary for their role in the birth and growth of the mission. Other major sponsors of the mission are MoneyGram, Jamaica National Building Society and GraceKennedy.