Surgical Service Trips


Performing Surgery in the Dominican Republic

Photo by Sebastian Kowalski

General Info

In 2005, a group of volunteers in various clinical specialties formed a partnership with the community of Peralta, Dominican Republic. In 2010, a similar partnership was formed in Jerusalem, a resettlement community outside of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The mission is to provide manpower, supplies, medications, training and encouragement to communities with the goal of helping these communities become empowered and positioned to offer independent and sustainable care. In addition to clinical work, Rush volunteers have also been involved in development of water purification and distribution, revenue from which supports operations in the partner clinics.

What is it?

Partnering with local physicians and surgeons, our teams provide much needed surgical services. Specialties include general surgery (90*), orthopedics (70*), urology (60*), pelvic reconstruction  (40*), ENT (90*), and plastics (20*).  Currently, there are five surgical care trips a year. Residency programs include ENT, orthopedics and urology. *Approximate cases per year.

Where is it?

Dominican Republic:
Azua, a city located approximately two hours northwest of Santo Domingo.
Peralta, a mountain village in the Azua province.
San Juan, a city located approximately three hours northwest of Santo Domingo.

When is it?
Surgical Trip Dates Volunteer Needs
Orthopedic July 1-8, 2023

Surgeons, Residents, Scrub Techs, RNs, Medicine Attg/Support, Students

ENT November 4-11, 2023

Surgeons, Residents, Scrub Techs, RNs, Medicine Attg/Support, Students

Uro/Gyn January 6-13, 2024 Surgeons, Residents, Scrub Techs, RNs, Medicine Attg/Support, Students
Orthopedic January 27-February 3, 2024 RNs
ENT March 2-9, 2024

Surgeons, Residents, Scrub Techs, RNs, Medicine Attg/Support, Students

General Surgery TBD Surgeons, Residents, Scrub Techs, RNs, Medicine Attg/Support, Students
Who can participate?

Teams are comprised of attending staff, residents, medical students, pharmacists, physical therapists, nurse practitioners, physician’s assistants, psychotherapists, nurses and support staff.

How do I get credit?

Fourth year medical students can participate in two ways:

  • Volunteer (take vacation time and participate on a trip)
  • Receive credit-to receive credit, students must meet with Dr. Aziz, be accepted into the M4 elective, and then are able to participate on a trip.  Please review full criteria for M4 elective prior to committing.
How much is it?

Team members are responsible for paying for airfare (varies), trip insurance ($50-$80), and a $1100 logistics fee (which covers lodging, meals, ground transportation, and administrative fees).
Students, residents, nurses, and support staff may be eligible for travel scholarships contingent on the availability of funds. Employees are eligible to apply for partial reimbursement using LEAP funds.

Information Packets & Resources
“Only in Peralta can one room be used as a coffee/breakroom, bathroom and place to treat sick people.” 

Kerstin Stenson, MD, Professor, Dept. Otorhinolaryngology, Rush Medical College (2016)






Photo by Hague Williams

“As an internal medicine resident who will be a future pulmonary and critical care fellow, I was thankful for the patience and persistence of the two Dominican anesthesiologists who walked me through the intubation process multiple times; in the states, I wouldn’t have had so many opportunities in repetition to improve that skill set.”
Thomas Quinn, MD, Resident, Internal Medicine, Rush (2018)
Photo by Hague Williams
Interested in Participating

Want to participate on a trip, please submit interest.