By Josh Leadbetter in Opinions
November 10, 2011
“We’re simply awesome” was a quote that stuck with the group of students who traveled to New York City to interview the founder of Doc2Dock.
Doc2Dock is a non-profit organization that donates unused medical equipment that would have otherwise been thrown away by American hospitals.
By one estimate, 7,000 tons of equipment a year, a value of nearly $20 billion dollars is simply thrown away in the United States. Much of this equipment has never been opened from its original packaging and is still sterile.
This is where Dr. Bruce Charash comes in. Dr. Charash founded Doc2Dock back in 2005 at the Clinton Global Initiative.
Dr. Charash, being motivated to make a difference, came up with the idea more or less on the spot to send the medical equipment that is simply being wasted over to 3rd world countries where it could still save lives.
Since 2005, Doc2Dock has donated close to $10 million dollars of donated medical equipment to 16 different countries bringing much needed supplies that has reached over 2 million people so far.
Traveling 212 miles from Lock Haven to New York City, four sociology students had the opportunity to sit down with Dr. Charash and the current CEO of Doc2Dock Kerri Geiger.
The students Josh Perchinski, Samantha Watson, Josh Leadbetter and Jonathan Gumpper were more than willing to journey through 3 hours of driving, 3 states and a blizzard after being intellectually stimulated by Dr. Kimberly Alexander in their Social Change course.
Perchinski, a junior from Montoursville, commented, “It was just an amazing experience for all of us…Dr. Bruce and Kerri are just truly amazing hardworking and motivated individuals that are saving lives daily.”
Spending about 2 hours with Geiger and Dr. Charash the sociology students learned what makes Doc2Dock special and some of the logistics behind the non-profit.
Dr. Charash explained to the bright-eyed students that there is a need out there for health care, especially in some countries in Africa that can be solved by sending our unused medical equipment to hospitals that need it and will certainly appreciate it.
Each container that Doc2Dock ships contains about $500,000 of donated medical equipment such as beds, sonograms and IVs. However each shipment costs $25,000.
This is a hurdle they cross through generous donations by individuals. Some of the major contributors that have been donors to Doc2Dock include Bill Clinton and Christy Turlington.
Dr. Charash and Kerri Geiger work under a $500,000 budget that goes to some of the overhead costs such as maintaining a 9,000 sq. foot warehouse that is lined with medical supplies waiting to be donated to 3rd world hospitals that are in desperate need.
Following their lunch interview at Sarah Beths in NYC, the three sociology students all made common notions of being inspired with a motivational push from the Doc2Dock executives
Samantha Watson, a junior from Milesburg, remarked, “Dr. Bruce reminded us that anyone can go out and make a difference in this world, it just takes some motivation and I think we gained that today and in Dr. Alexander’s class.”