A Promise to Peru, Inc. is looking forward to another busy year.  We have three missions planned and our teams are in place!


Eye Care Mission: Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota
Our team is working with Raymond Dennis and Wendy Nasta – Black of the nonprofit Artist for World Peace on their Native Eyes Mission. We are returning to Sinte Gleska University, one of the few tribal universities in the nation. The group plan to examine patients at the University, as well as establish a mobile unit to reach those in the more rural areas of the 922,759 acres of the reservation. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe, more properly known as Sicangu Lakota Oyate, or Burnt Thigh People, are descendants of the Sicangu Oyate of the Tetonwan Division of the Oceti Sakowin or Seven Council Fires. Last year, the team of 35 people from around the country examined 1,200 patients and 1,000 pairs of prescription glasses were dispensed.  We plan to do the same great work!

June 1-9
Team Members joining Artists for World Peace’s team:
Debra Messina, M.D. – team leader, administrative assistant
Cathy Roberts  – administrative assistant
William Epstein, M.D. – ophthalmologist, Oregon
Arnold Prywes, M.D. – ophthalmologist, New York
Alex Zaffaroni, M.D. – ophthalmologist, California
Michael Prywes – ophthalmic technician

George Coritsidis, M.D., Joseph Ng, M.D. and Noam Fast, M.D. have an exploratory meeting with tribal leaders for possible medical & psychiatric support for members on Rosebud Indian Reservation.


John Shanley, M.D. M.P.H. Medical Mission: Eye and Medical Care, Sacred Valley, Peru

Our team is working with the nonprofit organizations FNE International, Mike Cipoletti and Asociacion Winaypaq, Francisco Morales, M.D.

Now that the team is in place, Dr. Victor Rozas, from the Peruvian American Medical Society is obtaining the temporary medical licenses and the letter of invitation from the ministry of health. Our pharmacist and physicians are ordering thousands of dollars’ worth of medications. We have secured a portable ultrasound to transport to Peru. This assists in diagnosing certain medical conditions.  Our eye care team has two optometrists who will examine patients’ eyes and dispense a thousand pairs of prescription reading and distance glasses as well as sunglasses.  Our longtime collaborator, ophthalmologist, Dr. Frilo Silva will receive referral patients for cataract surgeries at CAPRECE clinic, Cuzco.

June 29- July 7 - 
Team Members(20):
George Coritsidis, M.D. team leader, nephrologist, critical care
Darren Triller, Pharm D pharmacist
Tracey Weisberg, M.D. oncologist
Christina Rager, M.D. emergency medicine, pulmonary, critical care
Carolina Pombar, M.D. pediatrician
Jenny Steffens, P.A.
Damaris Raymondi, O.D. optometrist
Pauline Leong, O.D. optometrist
Ana Castaneda translator at pharmacy station
Julia Colmenares visual acuity tester, translator
8 Medical Students from Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University, NY, 1 medical student from SUNY Upstate, Syracuse NY, 1 medical student from NYIT College of Osteopathic Medicine
1 Nursing Student, Pace University1 High School Student, Maryland
1 High School Student, Maryland

June 2018 Medical Mission. Drs. George Coritsidis and Caroline Pombar and Mike Cipoletti received certificates of appreciation from the Mayor Farfan and other elected officials in Ollayatambo.


Cataract Surgical Mission in Memory of Mark S. Sablow: Riobamba, Ecuador*

Our team is working with the nonprofit organization Partners for Andean Health Community partnersforandeancommunityhealth.org
Our goal will be to perform 100 cataract surgeries and to dispense reading glasses to people in rural communities.

September 21-29, 2019

Team Members:

Debra Messina, M.D. – team leader
Michael Sable, M.D. – surgical director
Cathy Roberts-administrator
Christina Rager, M.D. – critical care specialist
David Krebs, M.D. – ophthalmologist
Allison Angelilli, M.D.- ophthalmologist
Joseph Kristan, M.D.- ophthalmology resident, Montefiore Medical Center
Caroline Rienzo, R.N.
Alexandra Thanasoulis, R.N.
Lorena Chinchilla, COT
Frank Garcia, COT
Julia Colmenares – nursing assistant
Ken Roberts – sterilization
Pallavi Tatapudi Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University
Andrew Maggiolo – community outreach program
Ginger Thanasoulis- translator
Michael Mc Donald – Alcon representative

*For more information on mission naming opportunities please email Dr. Debra Messina at apromisetoperu[at]gmail.com

2018 Surgical Team in Riobamba, Ecuador