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Kenai Spine is About Giving Back to Communities

2018 Kenai Spine Mission Trip to Kenya

Every year, Kenai Spine contributes time and financial resources to support the Carolyn Jane Foundation, a 501c(3) charitable organization. The mission of the Carolyn Jane Foundation is to bring orthopedic care to rural areas of need.

As an elementary school teacher in Anchorage, Carolyn Jane Humphreys witnessed many young people caught in tenuous situations beyond their control. She realized that school was often the only stable and safe space for children. She developed federally-funded learning programs to reach remote Alaskan village populations, and broke down cultural and literacy barriers ever present in the forgotten corners of Anchorage. Helping people for the sake of helping was ingrained in Carolyn Jane and her family without an expectation of a “thank you.”

Throughout Dr. Humphreys’ career, he has looked for ways to give back to patients and the communities in which he has served. Over the years, Dr. Humphreys has also found great personal satisfaction providing free spine care, knowledge, and expertise to patients suffering from back and neck pain in countries like India, Lucia, Lithuania, and China. In 2010, he return to Alaska where he grew up as a fellowship-trained spine surgeon. He desired to finish his medical career providing the best quality spine care to Alaskans.

In 2014, Dr. Humphreys identified a Kenyan hospital — CURE Kenya — which provided the surgical operating rooms and necessary surgical instrumentation to enable the Kenai Spine team to perform complex spine surgery for underserved patients in Kijabe, Kenya, East Africa. This included complex scoliosis correction that would not otherwise be available in Kenya.

We are pleased to provide here images of Dr. Humphreys and the KenaiSpine clinical team on their 2018 Mission Trip to Kenya. This year — through the donation of medical products and equipment from multiple companies — the KenaiSpine team and CURE Kijabi hospital was able to forever change the lives of 13 patients from all over Africa. Many of these individuals — ages 13 to 63 — were immobile, in great pain, with no hope. The clinical team helped to give these people back their lives.

To find out more about how Kenai Spine gives back to the community, click to KenaiSpineGivesBack.com.


Kenai Spine donates time to Kenai Animal Shelter

Each month Kenai Spine selects a local charity to donate much needed time or resources. On February 28, 2014, a group of Kenai Spine employees volunteered at the Kenai Animal Shelter. The Kenai Spine team helped with a number of duties at the Animal Shelter including helping care for the animals living in the shelter.

The City of Kenai Animal Shelter & Control serves the City of Kenai. The Kenai Animal Shelter houses dogs and cats looking for loving, forever homes. The shelter even has other animals such as rabbits, ferrets or birds.

If you are interested in volunteering with the Kenai Animal Shelter, you may stop by the Kenai Animal Shelter, fill out an application and sign up on the schedule. Kenai Animal Shelter has allotted times for specific duties, and would love to fill that schedule with dedicated volunteers.

The Kenai Animal Shelter is located at 510 N. Willow Street in Kenai. The phone number is 907-283-7353 and Hours of Operation are Tuesday – Friday 11am-5:00pm and Saturday 11am-5pm.

kenai spine volunteers at Kenai Animal Shelter kenai spine volunteers at Kenai Animal Shelter kenai spine volunteers at Kenai Animal Shelter

 

Kenai Spine donates time & resources for Africa charity

Throughout Dr. Humphreys’ career, he has looked for ways to give back to patients and the communities in which he has served. Over the years, Dr. Humphreys has also found great personal satisfaction providing free spine care, knowledge, and expertise to patients suffering from back and neck pain in countries like India, Lucia, Lithuania, and China. He has also had a long track record of supporting many local events that benefit the underprivileged. In fact, Kenai Spine is working with 12 separate charitable organizations in the Soldotna community by donating time and money in support of their programs.

In 2012, Dr. Humphreys and his family traveled to Kenya on a medical mission trip with the World Medical Mission organization, where they each volunteered to provide health care to a much-needed area of the country. World Medical Mission was established in 1977 to assist general surgeons who wanted to volunteer for short-term mission trips in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Europe, Oceania, and the Middle East.

Dr. Humphreys and his family enjoyed their trip so much that they returned in January of 2014 with the hopes of finding a local hospital with which he could partner to provide spine care for the benefit of the underprivileged in Kenya, East Africa. As in 2012, Dr. Humphreys was able to utilize his 20 years of experience as an orthopedic spine surgeon to assist local doctors to treat patients suffering from orthopedic-related pathologies, while his family volunteered many hours of service working in the pediatric ward of the hospital providing comfort and relief to the many children admitted there.

While in Kenya, Dr. Humphreys also visited hospitals known for providing quality healthcare to the underserved in Kenya, and was able to identify a hospital just outside of Nairobi with which he can partner to build a quality spine program designed to educate local orthopedic residents and young surgeons, and ultimately provide affordable spinal health care to those suffering from neck and back pain.

Upon return home from Kenya, Dr. Humphreys and the team at Kenai Spine organized a committee whose job it will be to plan and execute a return trip to that hospital in Kenya where spine patients can receive advanced spinal health care. The Kenai Spine team plans to head back to Africa in January 2015.

“A project of this magnitude requires significant planning and participation by many people and organizations who are willing to donate their time, expertise, medical instrumentation and equipment for the benefit of the underprivileged in Kenya”, explains Craig Wilcox, executive director of Kenai Spine. Wilcox continues, “This is something Dr. Humphreys feels strongly about. He believes that he should give back to not only the Alaska community where he grew up, but also play some role in helping those in the poorest areas of Africa who suffer from spine problems, and who would never otherwise benefit from the pain relief provided by spine surgery. We are fortunate to be able to assemble a team that is capable and willing to carry out Dr. Humphreys’ vision.”

Patient Success Stories
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Surgery repairs damaged disc and returns outdoorsman to activity.

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Paramedic gets back to life with Kenai Spine.

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Healthcare CEO back on the job after pain relieving spine surgery.

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School administrator recovers from back pain without surgery.

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Dog sled champion back on the trails after non-surgical treatment.

Educational Resources
Medical Animations

Watch various medical animations to learn about conditions and treatment options.

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View medical illustrations that help you understand pain symptoms.

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Learn about special exercises and stretches that can relieve pain and help rehab muscles and joints.

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Learn about minimally invasive surgery techniques that enable patients to go home the same day.

Where to find us

Kenai Spine is the only spine center in the State of Alaska to be included in Spine Center Network, an exclusive national listing of spine centers of excellence that meet credentialing criteria related to fellowship-trained spine surgeons; non-surgical Mayo Clinic-trained MD physical medicine specialist for back and neck pain; and affiliated spine therapists. With an office on the Kenai Peninsula, and two offices in Anchorage, Kenai Spine provides great convenience to those with back pain or neck pain problems who live around Anchorage, including Wasilla, Palmer, Eagle River and the Mat-Su Valley. Click here for directions to our Anchorage offices or our main office in Soldotna on the Kenai Peninsula.

Physician Bios
Medical Animations

S. Craig Humphreys, MD
Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon
Fellowship-Trained Spine Surgeon

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John L. Andreshak, MD
Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon
Fellowship-Trained Spine Surgeon

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Mark Simonson, MD
Board Certified in PM&R
Board Certified in Pain Medicine