Who we are

MACLA Inc. is a Kansas City-based organization. More than 3,000 physicians, nurse anesthetists, and nurses have volunteered their time and talents to work with our medical teams. These dedicated volunteers have come from all over the United States. Many hospitals, businesses, foundations, and individuals have provided resources for continued service to the people of the Dominican Republic.

In 1985, Thomas E. Geraghty, MD, a plastic and reconstructive surgeon in Kansas City, traveled to the Dominican Republic as a chief surgeon supervising plastic surgery residents, nurses, and anesthesia personnel. The trip proved to be more than expected. As a result, MEDICAL AID FOR CHILDREN OF LATIN AMERICA (MACLA Inc.), a 501 (C) 3 not-for-profit corporation was developed for the purpose of surgically treating poor residents in the Dominican Republic and other third-world countries in the repair of cleft lips and palates, burn scar contractures, and various other correctable physical deformities.

Each February since 1985, Dr. Geraghty has taken medical/surgical personnel for 2-3 weeks to the Dominican Republic. In 1999, MACLA Inc. was invited by the Ambassador of Bolivia to set up clinics similar to those in the Dominican Republic. MACLA Inc.’s first medical/surgical trip to Bolivia was in November 1999, at which time the teams performed more than 60 surgeries and saw hundreds of patients in the clinic. The Bolivia missions continued until recent political unrest in that country made it unsafe to return. To date, the teams have surgically treated more than 4,000 patients, have consulted more than 10,000, and have provided medical care to tens of thousands more.

In 2015, Dr. Geraghty retired from private practice and turned over the reigns of MACLA Inc. to Dr. John Michael Quinn. Dr. Quinn is a local plastic surgeon who was among the first residents in training with MACLA Inc. in 1986. He has travelled as a volunteer surgeon ever since.

The Peace Corps is of great assistance with notifying those in need and helping bring patients from remote areas throughout the Dominican Republic. They also serve as liaisons and interpreters during the mission.

Our mission

Medical Aid for Children of Latin America (MACLA Inc.) endeavors to help the financially underprivileged of the Dominican Republic. The teams surgically treat patients with correctable physical deformities such as cleft lips and palates, burn scar contractures, and hand and soft tissue deformities. Our medical teams help to educate the Kansas City and third-world medical personnel.