The ministry of Operación San Andrés (OSA) began in 2003 with the first medical/dental mission trip to Peru. Under the leadership of Dr. Luis Campos, this mission team with 16 participants provided medical and dental care in Huaycan, Peru, a poor community towards the Andean region of Lima. Since then, mission trips have provided medical, dental, and other care to the residents of Collique, another shantytown on the outskirts of Lima. Significant growth in the OSA medical/dental campaigns has occurred each year since 2003. The 2004 trip included 26 medical professionals and lay volunteers. In 2005 the number grew to 36. Recently, the fall trips have included about 50 participants including medical doctors, nurses, dentists, dental hygienists, a pharmacist, a Doctor of Optometry, a Christian education team, and additional support staff. The number of patients seen by the medical doctors during the one week campaigns has increased from about 1000 in 2003 to about 2000 in 2008.
Doctors are able to prescribe medicines that are dispensed from the well stocked OSA pharmacy with a formulary of almost 100 oral and topical medications. (As an example, OSA has taken more than 1,000,000 multivitamin tablets to Peru over the past few years.) Most of these medications have been acquired as donations or purchased at deeply discounted prices from partner organizations such as Project Hope, Action Medeor, and Heart to Heart International.
While regular medical and dental campaigns by OSA have made a positive contribution to the health status of the residents of Collique, it is our desire to provide more continuous holistic health care and wellness education to these people. To this end, OSA is actively pursuing the following enhancements to our health care ministry:
- Joint programs with the Peruvian American Medical Society
- Cooperative relationships with the Hospital Sergio Bernales in Collique
- Cooperative relationships with other medical professionals in Lima
- Employment of nurses to teach preventive health care and nutrition classes
- Construction of a “posta medica” clinic for patient care and health education
- Improved relations with the Peruvian Minister of Health
- Reliable sources of potable water