April 27 through May 7, 2017
We are pleased to announce
our next dental and medical expedition to Central America!
SMILES FOR HONDURAS 2017
We anticipate helping approximately 700 young men and women prepare to serve LDS missions by providing assistance in filling out missionary papers, haircuts, missionary photos, blood and urine tests, missionary medical exams, dental hygiene, hygiene training, comprehensive restorative dentistry, endodontics, and oral surgery.
We will also be participating in various community service projects while we are in Tegucigalpa, including projects for orphanages, a children's cancer hospital, a maternity hospital, a service project for the families in a local LDS ward, and several visits to families in need.
Our Volunteer Team
Our team will be made up of approximately 120 volunteers. The estimated numbers of medical and dental professionals and volunteers needed are:
- 23 general dentists
- 5 endodontists
- 6 oral and maxillofacial surgeons
- 5 physicians
- 1 prosthodontist, orthodontist, or dental lab technician (to make replacement teeth)
- 2 nurses
- 3-4 dental hygienists
- 1-2 medical lab technicians
- 31 dental and oral surgical assistants (including pre-dental students)
- 2-3 volunteers to give haircuts
- Other volunteers to staff the dental and medical clinic areas
Dental and medical professionals are encouraged (but not required) to bring a trained assistant and/or family members to assist in the clinic. This will enable us to be as efficient as possible in this large endeavor.
Although Spanish language skills are a nice benefit, volunteers do not need to be able to speak Spanish to join an expedition.
Costs for the Expedition
The full cost of this trip is $2,780. The cost includes airfare from and returning to Salt Lake City (may be different for those departing from and returning to other airports), hotels, meals, and ground transportation. In addition to the 5 day medical/dental clinic in Tegucigalpa, we will take a three night vacation at the end of the trip to the beautiful island of Roatan in Honduras. Everyone, including tour leaders, pays his/her own way.
Payments are processed through the Smiles for Central America Foundation, a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.
For the safe participation of anyone who may work directly with patients, in sterilization, or in the medical lab, it is required that you complete a series of Hepatitis B immunizations.
The immunizations are given in a series of 2 to 3 doses over a period of 6 months. If you have not been immunized, it is recommended that you begin your series immediately. (You might also discuss with your doctor the possibility of an accelerated dosing schedule--3 doses in 30 days, with a booster at 12 months.)
It is strongly encouraged that you get the following immunizations to protect yourself and the group, as well as to prevent returning with a preventable contagious illness. Because of the nature of this volunteer medical service expedition, you may be exposed to body fluids and contagious illnesses. Most of our patients are healthy, but Smiles for Central America does not guarantee nor accept liability for any illness or injury sustained by participants during the trip.
Immunizations recommended by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) for Central America travel include:
- Hepatitis A and B
- TDAP (DPT) Booster and update of other routine immunizations (Tetanus within the past 10 years.)
- Yellow Fever (Only if you are coming from a Yellow Fever endemic area. Not a concern if you are traveling from North America.)
- Preventative medicine for Malaria is also recommended for many areas in Central America. Please discuss with your doctor and follow his/her recommendations.
DENTAL AND MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS:
To participate in a Smiles for Central America expedition, all medical and dental professionals are required to submit the following credentials at the time of registration:
Digital copies of your:
- current professional license
- fill out a brief online curriculum vitae (a brief resume)
Please have digital files of the first three documents ready to submit when you fill out your online registration. You will be prompted to upload the documents as part of your registration. You will also be prompted to fill out the online CV.
If you have submitted your passport and diploma for trips in 2010 or later, we still have your documents on file and you do not need to resubmit them.
However, you will need to submit a copy of your current professional license, as well as fill out the online CV. If your passport has expired since your last expedition, please submit a copy of your new one. Your registration will not be complete until all documents are received.
All dental and medical professionals should also have photocopies of these documents with them while on the expedition.
We will also use your documents to help you apply for a temporary license to practice in the country. All dental professionals will need to do this, as you cannot practice without it.We will apply for the license for you, but it is critical that we apply as a group. To ensure that we are able to obtain your special license, please submit your documents at registration.
Please be aware that medical professionals will only be authorized to perform examinations, and will not be licensed to provide treatment.
Obtaining Permission to Bring Dental and Medical Equipment into the Country
We must also obtain permission from the government for you to bring your equipment, supplies, and medicines into the country and through the airport duty-free.
To do this, you must submit a detailed inventory list of the drugs, anesthetics, supplies, instruments, and equipment you will be bringing into the country. This must be submitted to the government several weeks before we arrive.
WHAT WE NEED FROM YOU--DUE DATE MARCH 1: After you have submitted your registration, we will send you a form where you will list the drugs, anesthetics, instruments, supplies, and equipment. Please fill in the quantities, lot numbers, expiration dates, and dollar values of each. Please submit the completed form as soon as possible.
Submission of this list will enable you to pass through customs duty-free. If you do not submit the list, or if you bring items you have not listed, your equipment may be confiscated and/or you may be taxed before you can enter the country.
Please pay special attention to expiration dates of medications. Those dates must have at least 6 months remaining before the expiration date when you enter the country.
IMPORTANT: In the past, you may have asked us to use an inventory list from a past trip. We will no longer be able to do this. You will need to submit a new list each trip. It might be helpful for you to print a copy for your own use on future trips.
Participants must have a current passport that does not expire before September 1, 2017. Passport numbers for travelers with our group must be turned in to the government at least a month before our arrival to ensure our humanitarian status. You will not need to obtain a visa for this trip.
What to Bring
Every member of the team is asked to pack light!
Each person is allowed two pieces of personal luggage to carry on into the passenger compartment of the airplane--one for the overhead compartment (such as a small rolling overnight suitcase) and one to go under the seat (such as a large daypack).Everyone (except doctors, dentists, surgeons, and dental hygienists) is asked to use their checked baggage allowance to carry two 50-pound duffel bags filled with humanitarian supplies that are packed by our humanitarian team.
Dental and medical professionals are allowed up to two checked bags (as needed) to bring their medical and dental supplies. Those professionals who do not need both bags for their supplies will be asked to use their allowance for humanitarian supplies.
Surgeons who need more than the two-checked-bag limit will be able to have other volunteers use their allowance to bring the extra bags of supplies.
Application and Registration
All applications will be reviewed upon receipt, and you will be contacted for a phone interview within a few weeks.
Space on this expedition is limited and we anticipate that we will receive more applications than we can accommodate. We recommend turning in your application as soon as possible.
After you have filled out the online application and have been selected to participate in the expedition, you will be given a password to access the online Registration form and the Payment link, and a link for Medical and Dental Professionals to submit professional documents.
When you receive the password information, please promptly fill out the registration form. The Registration form is in addition to the shorter Application form and includes more detailed information that we must receive before you can join the expedition.
Payment in full is due at registration. We will purchase your airline ticket as soon as you make your payment--this will help us get the lowest ticket prices possible. You may make your payment online with a check or savings account, online with a credit card, or with a check by mail. Payment by check or savings is preferred as it saves credit card fees and keeps expedition costs down. Payment details will be provided on the Payment page.
We hope you will join us!