Dr. Christopher Johnson’s medical mission project aids in disaster relief

Christopher Johnson, MD, FACS, knee, upper extremity and sports medicine specialist at Professional Orthopaedic Associates, spearheaded the establishment of the Adult Burn Center in the Escuela Hospital of Honduras after his 2013 medical mission trip made him aware of the dire need for a dedicated burn facility. The Adult Burn Center opened early, out of necessity, at the end of February 2015 to provide emergency treatment to victims of a local explosion.

As the local program director and a long-time volunteer in the Health Volunteers Overseas organization, Dr. Johnson coordinates and participates in volunteer care for the HVO’s mission program at Escuela Hospital. Recognizing the dire need for a dedicated burn center, Dr. Johnson began fundraising in the summer of 2013. Through his efforts, most notably a gala thrown by Dr. Johnson and a team of volunteers, Dr. Johnson was able to raise nearly $75,000 to establish the Adult Burn Center at the Escuela Hospital.

Though the unit was finished early, the official ribbon cutting was slated to take place when Dr. Johnson was available to return to Honduras on March 2. However, on February 20, an explosion at a popular market in the capital of Honduras forced the clinic to open its doors early to treat the roughly 70 civilians who were wounded and burned by the explosion.

“Having a dedicated burn unit in a hospital is critical so as not to expose burn victims to infection and illness,” says Dr. Johnson. “It was certainly a blessing that the center was completed early so civilians harmed by the explosion could receive the treatment they desperately needed. It was a privilege to have been able to contribute to the hospital so they could afford the necessary equipment and resources to bring the Adult Burn Center into fruition.”

To schedule an appointment with an expert at Professional Orthopaedic Associates, call (732) 530-4949.