A specialized surgery team composed of 18 volunteers from the Canvasback Missions, a California-based non-profit organization, is offering free orthopedic surgeries to Palauans until February 15.

Backed by companies from the United States such as the Zimmer-Biomet, who donated over $1-million worth of implants, the team was able to provide free orthopedic services to patients in Palau.

Canvasback Missions, Inc. Director and Co-Founder Jacque Spence told Island Times that they had already recorded a total of 25 knee replacements, one total hip replacement, and some arthroscopy surgical procedures.

Spence said that the Canvasback Missions started in the Marshall Islands in 1986 and they had since been doing total joint, knee, and hip replacements and other orthopedic-related services in the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, and Palau.

The surgeries conducted by the team during their mission in Palau are deemed helpful to the patients as these are the kinds that normally require them to go off-island for treatment due to lack of available facility in the country.

The team is set to leave on February 11 but one of the orthopedic surgeons will extend a week of stay to follow-up on the conditions of the patients operated by the team during the mission.

Canvasback also plans to bring another mission that provides dental and gynecology services in Palau come September. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)