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  • Writer's pictureOCHO


Updated: May 22, 2021

OCHO welcomed the visit of the medical director of the Atima’s Health Center from February 19-25.  Dr. Patrocinio Sarmiento was our guest on a professional development trip.  His goal was to shadow doctors in different specialty areas and learn about clinical practices as well as work flow that could be implemented at the health center in Atima.

In anticipation of the upcoming opening of the Maternal Unit in Atima, Dr. Sarmiento was primarily interested in visiting medical centers with a strong program in neonatology, perinatal care, ER pediatrics, and new born care.  He had the opportunity to visit Dr. Pedro Arrabal and Dr. Melinda Elliott at Sinai Hospital, Dr. Fernando Mena at Franklin Square Hospital, and Dr. James Rice from Annapolis Pediatrics who gave him tour of the Anne Arundel Medical Center.

Dr. Sarmiento was also interested in discussing ways in which his staff members could support OCHO’s work with children with special needs.  One of his goals is to streamline the communication channels between the teachers at the Atima’s rehabilitation center, the medical team of Atima, and the volunteers of OCHO.  He met a dedicated group of physical therapists, occupational therapists, pediatricians, speech pathologists, and special educators at theKennedy Krieger Institute, and learned of the well-developed program that they intend to implement during the upcoming June brigade.  

An important goal for this meeting was the discussion of the future construction of the new rehabilitation and educational center that OCHO is funding in collaboration with the municipality of Atima.

He finally met with Prof. Jody Gan, professor of Public Health at American University.  The purpose of the meeting was to assist Prof. Gan in planning her curriculum on teen pregnancy prevention.  She will be working with a committed group of youth leaders in Atima to work on education of parents and other youth in the area of family planning.

On his last night, we hosted an informal dinner for Q & A with Dr. Sarmiento and some of the clinicians who will be going to Atima in June.

We want to extend our gratitude to additional people who contributed to the success of en educational experience for both Dr. Sarmiento and the OCHO members:

Aisha Alfadhalah, CCC/SLP

Robert Besch

Jennifer Boyle, PT

Dr. Joanna Burton

Quyen Catania, PT

Dr. Elizabeth Cristofalo

Susan Demetrides, CRNP

Dr. Melinda Elliott

Nancy Inman, CCC/SLP

Pia Karlsson, OTR/L

Beatriz Kolher, RN

Dr. Eric Levey

Zeina Mvemba, CCC/SLP

Anne Parshall, MEd

Myrna Pittaway, OTR/L

Cristina Saenz de Tejada, Ph.D.

Fatima Salem, CCC/SLP

Dr. Dana Silver

Kristin Stubbs-Brockmeyer, OTR/L

Dr. Ken Tellerman

Chelsea Tighe

Dr. Annemiek Wilms-Floet

And let’s not forget the following dedicated interpreters:

Hal Malone

Alli Allen

Yasmin Torres



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