“60 Minutes” showcases Mercy Ships & oral and maxillofacial surgery, Sunday, Feb. 17

February 15th, 2013

Mercy Ships, the international nonprofit organization that operates hospital ships in some of the poorest nations in the world, will be featured on CBS' "60 Minutes" on Sunday, Feb. 17 at approximately 7 p.m. EST. The segment, which was reported by award-winning journalist Scott Pelley, highlights the work of the Africa Mercy, the world's largest floating hospital. The segment includes interviews with the staff, crew and volunteers including Chief Medical Officer and oral and maxillofacial surgeon, Dr. Gary Parker. Additionally, the program will include the stories of several patients including those being treated for cataracts and maxillofacial conditions.

In 1986, Dr. Parker, who was awarded honorary fellowship in the AAOMS at the 2012 Annual Meeting, completed his residency training at ULCA and an additional five years of surgical training in the Maxillofacial Surgery Unit in North Wales. He immediately accepted a position with Mercy Ships, and 26 years later, he is still on board, repairing the faces and lives of the least fortunate among us.

Mercy Ships medical services include cleft lip and palate repair, cataract removal, orthapaedic procedures, maxillofacial reconstruction and plastic surgery, obstetric fistula repair and dental care. The organization also trains local medical professionals in their area of expertise and completes community development projects that focus on water and sanitation, education, infrastructure development and agriculture.