Chelsy Cross is one of our awesome volunteers! Thanks for your efforts on behalf of SAO, Chelsy!!
Q: What is your job title:
A: I’m a Medical Imaging Engineer; I primarily install, perform routine and corrective maintenance and train users on many types of radiology imaging devices including ultrasound, Xray and fluoroscopy. In my recent past I also worked as a Clinical Engineer, specializing on hemodialysis equipment, patient vital sign monitors, nurse call equipment, and surgery devices.
Q: How many trips have you taken with SAO?
A: I’ve only been on one mission to Ethiopia, in May of 2013 for 2 weeks. It was short, but intense. It has definitely left a lifelong impression on me. I would be up for another medical mission trip. What is appealing abut volunteering in a place like Ethiopia is that it is a chance to meet people from a place that is very different from my own, learn from my colleagues there and use skills I’ve developed in the healthcare industry and previous experiences. I see it as a chance to give back some of the opportunities that I’ve been afforded, and see new places. I’ve traveled extensively around the world and volunteered for other opportunities here in the US, but in doing this I was able to blend both of that together.
Q: What projects did you work on with SAO?
A: On my SAO mission I was at the Black Lion Hospital. I was tasked with working with another Biomedical Engineer to install patient monitors in the ICUs, deliver beds to the hospital, install electrosurgical equipment to the OR’s with transformers to get them to run on 220V. I also worked on installing monitors to anesthesia machines, and rehabbing some of the surgical equipment belonging to the Black Lion. I also made an endoscope holder for one of the surgery suites. It took a bit of doing, but I was able to scrounge up some plastic water pipe, a piece of board fro a coat rack and some hardware. I was able to fabricate a 6 scope holder and mounted it to the concrete wall.
Q: Any special memories from your trip?
A: I liked that after about 4 days there, I started to really know my way around and recognized familiar faces. I knew who to ask for certain things, and I started to feel like I worked there. I liked working with the Biomeds at the Black Lion, especially Berihun Gebrehawariat. Their shop looked a lot like any Biomed shop in the US…there were tools everywhere and pieces of medical equipment that had been disassembled and used to fix other things. One of my favorite memories there was taking a coffee break with my partners from the US and Ethiopia at the coffee shop in the lobby of the Black Lion. We would have these wonderful coffees and teas, or even a mixture of the two called a “Twist”. We’d talk about what we’ve done and what was important to get done next. I really remember doing this with my buddies Jennifer Johnson, Raeann Kreps, Zac Cross, Steve Sands, Eba and Beri.
Q: What are your hobbies and special interests outside of work?
A: Back home when I’m not working I enjoy the outdoors with my lovely wife Cyndi. Things like bicycling, hiking, skiing, and riding my Harley. I love to cook, barbecue, and brew beer. I appreciate art and live music. I live life with gusto because I have no idea how long I have here.