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Meet Hawaii Doctors Who Traveled on a Mission Trip to Philippines


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Hawaii doctors Lisa Grininger and Rebecca Sawai went on a medical mission trip to the Philippines as part of Aloha Medical Mission to help heal the poorest people in Tuguegarao and the surrounding region.

Hawaii doctors Lisa Grininger and Rebecca Sawai went on a medical mission trip to the Philippines as part of Aloha Medical Mission to help heal the poorest people in Tuguegarao and the surrounding region.
Photo: David Croxford

 

Lisa Grininger, MD

How many years have you been a part of Aloha Medical Mission?
Since 1993 (20 years)

How many trips have you gone on?
About a dozen trips to the Philippines/Southeast Asia.

Tell me about some high points.
"Working with the local hospital doctors and staff, and the patients, is most rewarding. Things are very different and we don’t realize how fortunate we are in terms of the resources we have. It’s interesting to learn how things are managed in different countries. We’re limited by the supplies we can pack and carry, and patients don’t have medical records we can review in advance, but we do the best we can and as safely as possible to help people who have very little resources available. Everyone wants to do the best they can for the patient."

Biography
Lisa M. Grininger, MD has been practicing medicine since 1985. She earned her medical degree from the University of Hawaii, John A. Burns School of Medicine, and completed her residency in general surgery at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. Dr. Grininger joined the Hawaii Permanente Medical Group in 1990. She is board certified in surgery. Dr. Grininger has been recognized as a “Best Doctor” in HONOLULU Magazine’s Best Doctors in Hawaii list.

 

 

Rebecca Sawai, MD

How many years have you been a part of Aloha Medical Mission?
This was first year (2014).

How many trips have you gone on?
One trip (February 6-15).

Tell me about some high points.
“You learn skills of resiliency and flexibility. Working in an environment where you don’t have resources stretches you, and you learn to adapt. The scope of surgeries and procedures were small, because we were limited by the hospital’s resources. These weren’t life-saving procedures, but they made a huge difference in quality of life. These patients wouldn’t have been able to pay for the procedures otherwise. People were so appreciative. It’s both challenging and fulfilling.”

Biography
Rebecca S. Sawai, MD has been practicing medicine since 2001. She earned her medical degree from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, and completed her residency in general surgery at Oregon Health & Science University Hospital. After completing her fellowship in colon and rectal surgery at the Mayo School of Graduate Medical Education in Rochester, Minn., Dr. Sawai joined the Hawaii Permanente Medical Group in 2008. Dr. Sawai is board certified in colon and rectal surgery, as well as general surgery. Dr. Sawai has been recognized as a “Best Doctor” in HONOLULU Magazine’s Best Doctors in Hawaii list.
 

PHOTOS

To read the full story with more photos from the mission trip, visit Hawaii Business Magazine.
 

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