Armenia Fund USA’s latest medical mission elevates orthopedic capabilities of Stepanakert hospital

Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian perform groundbreaking surgeries, train local medical staff

Los Angeles, October 30, 2018 – The unprecedented advancement of orthopedic capabilities at the Stepanakert Republican Medical Center, in the capital of Artsakh, has been among the key accomplishments of Armenia Fund USA’s 2018 medical mission to Armenia and Artsakh. The technical and professional levels of the hospital’s orthopedic capabilities were raised thanks to the volunteer work of renowned orthopedic surgeons and brothers Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian, as well as orthopedic equipment and supplies donated by DJO Surgical.

Armenia Fund USA’s 2018 medical mission, which took place from September 22 through 26 at Noyemberyan Hospital, in Armenia’s Tavush Region, and from September 27 through October 5 in Stepanakert, was implemented jointly by Armenia Fund USA and Adventist Health.

During the mission in Stepanakert, Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian performed a total of 18 groundbreaking surgeries, working side by side with local colleagues. The procedures included 14 total-knee-implant operations, which were being executed for the first time in Artsakh, as well as four arthroscopic operations. Dr. Stephan Yacoubian performed arthroscopic shoulder and knee surgeries, while Dr. Shahan Yacoubian performed knee-replacement surgeries. All of these procedures were made possible by state-of-the-art implants and other orthopedic-surgery supplies donated by DJO Surgical, with a total value $200,000.

We were extremely pleased with our first-ever orthopedic mission to Artsakh,” Dr. Shahan Yacoubian said. “We feel it was a great success, as we were able to provide patients in Artsakh with a range of orthopedic services, such as knee-replacement surgeries, that had never been available to them. Additionally, we were able to collaborate with the local medical staff and establish a strong relationship, which we hope we can build on well into the future. That relationship is already growing, as we’ve begun to follow up on the care of patients treated in Artsakh through telemedicine. I commend and thank everyone’s involvement and commitment to the joint Armenia Fund/Adventist Health medical mission.

Throughout their work at the Stepanakert Republican Medical Center, Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian placed utmost emphasis on boosting the technical knowledge and skills of the hospital’s orthopedics staff. Accordingly, the volunteer doctors provided their local colleagues with intensive training in best practices with regard to all aspects and protocols of orthopedic operations, including training in the utilization of equipment and supplies donated by DJO Surgical. By the conclusion of the medical mission in Artsakh, Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian had, in effect, enabled the Stepanakert Republican Medical Center to establish a world-class department of orthopedics.

“I would like to convey our deep gratitude to Drs. Stephan and Shahan Yacoubian for their marvelous, exemplary spirit of volunteerism, and their outstanding work in helping raise the orthopedic capabilities of the beneficiary hospital to 21st-century standards,” said Sarkis Kotanjian, Executive Director of Armenia Fund USA, and continued, “I would also like to express our heartfelt thanks to DJO Surgical for its extremely generous donation, which made it possible to fully implement the orthopedics component of our mission in Artsakh.”

Dr. Stephan Yacoubian is a Board Certified orthopedic surgeon and the senior partner at Orthopaedic Surgery Specialists, in Burbank, California. Dr. Shahan Yacoubian, likewise a Board Certified orthopedic surgeon, is a general partner at Orthopaedic Surgery Specialists. Based in Vista, California, DJO Surgical is a division of DJO Global, a leading provider of high-quality orthopedic devices, as well as a developer, manufacturer, and distributor of a broad range of reconstructive implant products.

The 2018 missions to Noyemberyan and Stepanakert were carried out by a volunteer team of over 68 doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals from the Adventist Health Southern California Region. They provided an extensive range of free medical services — including primary and specialty care, various tests and screenings, and surgeries — to close to 2,650 patients from throughout the Tavush and Lori regions; and, for the first time, to close to 1,040 patients from Stepanakert and other regions of Artsakh. Moreover, free prescriptions were provided to more than 2,500 patients in Noyemberyan and Stepanakert.

To date, the medical missions to Noyemberyan and Stepanakert have provided a wide range of care, including 347 surgeries, to a total of 9,440 patients.

Noyemberyan Hospital was completely rebuilt and modernized by Armenia Fund USA’s Swiss and German partner organizations in 2011. The Stepanakert Republican Medical Center was built by the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund in 2013, through a generous donation by Russia-based benefactor Samvel Karapetyan. The facility is adjacent to the Stepanakert Armine Pagoumian Polyclinic, built by Armenia Fund USA in 2006; as well as the Stepanakert Oncology Center, constructed by the Fonds Armenien de France in 2007.

Stay tuned.


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