Drs Wijesekera and Russo travel to Dominican Republic to provide safe care to children with scoliosis


World Spine Outreach is an incredible organization that provides international spine care to some of the most underserved areas of the globe. Dr. Shirvinda Wijesekera has been a long-standing member of this mission and, in recent years, has been joined by Dr. Glenn Russo. They have worked with other volunteers, local and nationwide, to provide safe and complex corrective surgery, in an austere environment, to children suffering from scoliosis in the Dominican Republic.

Together, the team works in collaboration with local surgeons to treat patients, educate trainees, and develop safety protocols to enhance patient care now, and for years to come. Without exception, each team member demonstrates exceptional professionalism, talent, commitment and compassion. “It is truly a humbling experience working with a team of this high caliber of character,” said Dr. Glenn Russo. While the days are long, grueling and there are no robots or guided navigation systems, these experts take on the hardest cases with unwavering dedication. This year’s team was made up of 48 volunteers, which is the biggest group to date! “I have been lucky to be part of this amazing mission with World Spine Outreach as we have traveled the world treating patients with scoliosis. We have now treated over 800 patients in DR at one location in the past 15 years. It is a privilege to be part of the team and serve as the medical director. Great patients, great work and a great team.” said Dr. Wijesekera.

The mission group helped approximately 19 local pediatric patients with spinal deformity this year.