A shot in the arm for medical exchange program | AspenTimes.com

A shot in the arm for medical exchange program

Dear Editor:

During the week of Oct. 2, 2011, Dr. Sandra Velazquez, a dentist from Bariloche, Argentina traveled to Aspen, Colo., to participate in the Aspen Bariloche Medical Exchange Program.

Since Bariloche became a Sister City of Aspen in 2002, the Aspen Bariloche Medical Exchange Program has been working to improve patient care in both the Aspen and Bariloche communities through education, philanthropy, and cultural exchanges.

On behalf of Aspen Sister Cities, the Aspen Bariloche Medical Exchange Program, the Aspen Sports Medicine Foundation, Aspen Orthopaedic Associates, and generous host Robert M. Christensen, DDS, we would like to say a sincere thank-you to all the individuals who worked very hard to provide Dr. Velazquez with a meaningful and educational experience.

Along with Dr. Robert M. Christensen the following area dentists and staff warmly welcomed Dr. Velazquez into their offices and offered her a rewarding professional experience: Marcus J. Blue, DMD; Roger J. Brown DMD; Stephen S. Kelly, DMD; and Eugene A Covello, DDS. We thank you for warmly welcoming her and for the supportive manner in which you received Sandra in your offices. Dr. Velazquez returned home with new dental knowledge and skills, and especially fond memories of a welcoming and friendly dental community in the Roaring Fork Valley.

We would also like to extend a special thank-you to the Hotel Durant and Mountain Chalet for generously offering Dr. Velazquez free accommodations while she was visiting Aspen. We would not be able to offer exchanges like this without the generosity of local businesses. We also appreciate the Aspen Rotary Club for inviting Dr. Velazquez to participate in their weekly meeting and so graciously welcoming her to the Aspen community.

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Thank you to the many volunteers who are working tirelessly to improve patient care in the Aspen and Bariloche communities through the Aspen Bariloche Medical Exchange Program. This program would not be possible without the extremely generous support and dedication of The Buster Foundation, Bariloche Sister Cities, Aspen Sister Cities, Francesca MacPherson, Aspen Valley Hospital, Aspen Orthopaedic Associates, and Aspen Sports Medicine Foundation.

Griff Smith, coordinator, Aspen Sister Cities Bariloche

Mark L. Purnell, MD, Aspen Orthopaedic Associates

Laura Pritchard, Aspen Sports Medicine Foundation