What They Are Saying
All participants of the program were interviewed about their experience at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. This is what they said...
What were you expecting from SOS?
We had very low expectations since China market is so uniquely complicated. Didn't expect any real understanding or any functionality but instead found their ability to navigate China waters more in depth than I ever imagined and made the entire experience pleasant.
What were you expecting from UFH?
Hoping for a smooth process. I knew they had good facilities, and I was hoping that the new emergency room would upgrade that part of the facility. Hoping there would be good communications and availability. Did it meet your expectations? Yes Exceed them? Yes, Ann Moncure, [the hospital CEO] was outstanding, whole staff made sure it was a seamless move, very available, new ER was great; everything went off exactly as promised.
What would you tell other docs who are on the fence about participating?
Call me and I will encourage them to participate. Its an obligation we have to our athletes as much as anything - there to serve as volunteers.
What surprised you the most about the experience?
One experience summed it up. I went to see the American water polo team play because I operated on one of the members of the team. . The team barely made it, funding wise to the Olympics, and they were only ranked 9th in the world. But they competed really hard and beat some of the best teams in the world, and got into gold medal game against Hungary. Now Hungary is one of the real powerhouses in the world. At the gold medal game, I was really proud how the American team hung in there and they really competed even though they lost. When the boys came out of the locker room, 40-5o-Americans were waiting, mostly friends and families of the athletes but there were several hundred Hungarians. All of a sudden the Hungarians started chanting USA, USA . It was really moving and it still gives me goose bumps. It was everything the Olympics is supposed to be about and to be part of it was an experience I will cherish for the rest of my life.
Logistically, how did the surgical program perform? How was the housing, food, transportation?
Outstanding. Every part of every aspect of our stay was spectacular. Housing, ability to move around the City exceptional, dedicated support staff was great - could not have been better.