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For 13 years, Dr. George Stavros and his wife Susie have been organizing free health clinics within the community of Puerto Peñasco. Their efforts have come to be known as Rocky Point Medical Clinics, during which they are usually accompanied by various doctors, translators, and others who graciously donate their time and expertise in providing consultation to poorer sectors of the city. In 2011, the Stavros were even surprised with an award presented by Sonoran Governor Padres at a gathering of the Sonora/AZ. Commission! While many of the clinics are currently held at facilities of the Family of God Church at the end of Ave. No Reelección on the way to Sandy Beach area resorts, the Rocky Point Medical Clinics are often set up in impoverished areas known as “invasiones” (squatter settlements) across the city.
On May 19th, the Clinic at Family of God church included general health consultations, CPR classes in Spanish, and even eye exams provided by local optician Gustavo Turati of Optica Turati. Turati had done an eyeglass frame drive for a number of weeks prior to the clinic, so that he would be able to offer glasses at a discounted price for those attending the clinic. While on some occasions the City Health Center has been present to perform pap smears, they were not part of the May 19th clinic. Volunteer doctors, along with a group of student translators from the U of A, were part of the well-organized clinic, which also offered a small dining tent with hot-dogs, oranges, and popcorn provided by the church’s growing youth group as well as other church volunteers who reside here in Puerto Peñasco.
Jorge Merino, Church Administrator and assistant in coordinating the May 19th clinic, explained on average the clinics, which are held from about 9 a.m. – 3 p.m, see around 150 people in one day. The intent of the Rocky Point Medical Clinics, Susie added, is to hold them once a month while also providing religious instruction and outreach through the Family of God (though the clinics are open to all). Susie tells us in the past, the Clinics and their ongoing outreach have also been able to raise funds for specific surgeries or services, including the recent example of attention and care for an infant with a cleft palette. She explained that through the relationship with Family of God church they are also now able to receive tax-deductible donations and welcome in-kind donations such as wheelchairs, walkers, multi-vitamins, children’s chewable vitamins, and in May they were looking for catheter equipment. Funds are generally used to purchase medicine, vitamins, as well as rice and beans that are given out to clinic attendees. They have also shared some of the donations received with the local Red Cross.
The next series of the Rocky Point Medical Clinics is planned for this weekend, June 9th, at “Nuevo Nacimiento” church in town. For more information on the clinics, or to pursue possibly donating your time as a medical professional, translator, etc. please contact the Rocky Point Medical Clinics by visiting them on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/RockyPointMedicalClinics or contact Susie Stavros firstname.lastname@example.org