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Adventist Hinsdale Hospital extends its healing mission abroad

Hinsdale – After five painful and unsuccessful surgeries, a 14-year-old patient from Abu Dhabi finally learned in May that she would be able to receive the treatment needed to alleviate her suffering from hip dysplasia.  However, in order to obtain this care, she and her family would have to travel over 7,000 miles to Adventist Hinsdale Hospital to receive it.

After meeting with Adventist Hinsdale Hospital Pediatric Orthopedist Dr. Kamal Ibrahim and his team abroad, the United Arab Emirates native learned that a possible solution for her condition would exist at Adventist Hinsdale Hospital if she and her family agreed to travel to the United States for the procedure. 

Because many Adventist Hinsdale Hospital doctors have worked to provide treatment to patients overseas for years, hospital staff decided to launch a plan to create a more structured international healthcare services program.  Ibrahim’s connection with patients in the United Arab Emirates allowed him to bring the first international patient to this program that would work to extend the hospital’s healing mission to patients abroad. 

“The international health care services program is extremely important because it allows us to extend our expertise and excellent services to patients abroad,” said Ibrahim.  “This program opens up the exceptional health care that Adventist Hinsdale Hospital can provide to a much larger group of people.”

The Adventist Hinsdale Hospital’s international health care services program was designed to offer its patients a number of accommodations to make their experience at the hospital and in the United States an easy one.  The program offers assistance with travel and financial arrangements, accommodates religious and cultural needs, coordinates patient appointments, and provides entertainment recommendations for Chicago and surrounding areas.

“We partnered with Accurate Translation, an international patient liaison service that interprets all medical documents and provides other translation services, to accommodate all of the patient’s needs as they travel and receive medical attention,” said Registration Director Kelly Soto. 

Adventist Hinsdale Hospital Director in Surgical Services Jackie Stege, RN, said the hospital wanted to bring individualized attention to the specific health, religious, and social needs of international families.  The program allows the hospital’s doctors of different specialties to come together to provide various types of treatment and medical services to patients who may be unable to receive this care at home.

Following the young patient’s successful surgery on May 4, she participated in more than six weeks of physical therapy to continue her healing process.  Already she is able to walk easier and for longer distances than she was able to do before the surgery as a result of performing daily exercises that work to strengthen the muscles in her hip and leg.

“Everyone at the hospital has made this experience very easy.  The doctors and the physical therapists have been excellent,” said the patient’s father Abedalhadi Alarethi.  “I have seen definite improvement in my daughter’s condition.”  

Physical Therapist Carla Pister of Adventist Paulson Rehabilitation said, “She never complains during her therapy sessions, even when I know she must be in pain.  Unfortunately, it will be hard for them to find another physical therapist when they go home, but she has promised to continue the many exercises that we have practiced together when she returns to Abu Dhabi.”

Adventist Hinsdale Hospital considers its International Health Care Services Program a major success for the hospital.  With the help of the hospital’s doctors and their ethnic ties abroad, the hospital has already made plans for future patients.  The program has also received praise from patients abroad, including a high-ranking Egyptian businessman and his wife who recently toured Adventist Hinsdale Hospital to look at its health care opportunities and facilities.  However, the extra services and accommodations that the hospital can provide may also be offered to patients traveling to us from within the United States. 

Dr. Ahmed Elborno, medical director of the hospital’s Pain Management Center of Excellence and another doctor working to bring international patients to Adventist Hinsdale Hospital, says, “This opportunity gives Adventist Hinsdale Hospital the chance to offer a full range of services to our traveling friends in and out of the country, yet we are also able to provide the community with world class health care in their own backyard.”