Kissimmee doctors help sick patients in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria

By Stephanie Bechara, Osceola County Reporter
Last Updated: Monday, January 01, 2018, 6:35 PM EST

A team of doctors from Kissimmee flew to Puerto Rico to help its overwhelmed health care system in light of Hurricane Maria.

  • Kissimmee doctors treated Puerto Rican patients after Maria
  • Humanitarian trip sent 8 doctors to 6 cities
  • Dr. Bolaños hopes to return to the island again
  • RELATED: Hurricane Maria impact

More than three months after Maria devastated Puerto Rico, residents are still dealing with grim conditions.

“People suffered there and had immense loses,” said Dr. Nora Bolaños.

Bolaños has been part of the Department of Pediatrics at Osceola Regional Medical Center for more than 20 years. She is currently the director of the program.

Bolaños recently got back from a humanitarian trip to Puerto Rico meant to help treat sick patients. She went with the help of her church, Calvary City Church and Osceola Regional Medical Center.

“It’s a huge blessing to know that our community comes together in a time like this,” she said.

The team of eight doctors took about eight thousand dollars’ worth of medication. They were there for a week and visited six different cities within the island.

“These patients did really need the help,” she said. “They had ulcers, diabetes, high blood pressure. Very poorly taken care of and not enough medical attention for them.”

With the help of Osceola Regional Medical Center, Bolaños wants to return to Puerto Rico to lend a hand once more within a year.

“It does feel rewarding, and it also teaches you to appreciate all the blessings that you have here in the city in our community,” she said.

The trip was a life-changing experience, and Bolaños believes it taught her that Puerto Rico has what it takes to overcome the challenges ahead and pick itself up.

“They have that love and that unity and that faith that they are going to be fine -- that Puerto Rico se levanta,” Bolaños added.

Bolaños hopes people making donations take into consideration the outskirts of the country, since these inaccessible areas lack the most medical care, she said.