by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Soul of Photography

Worldwide Healing

volunteer_gosman2Amanda Gosman has an impressive professional resume that includes being the chief of plastic surgery at Rady Children’s Hospital and being a UCSD associate professor and director of craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgery. But what really stands out is the philanthropic medical mission she has undertaken. Amanda is founder and president of ConnectMed International, a nonprofit organization providing free international medical care and education to communities worldwide. “We specifically focus on providing the same quality of care that we provide in the U.S.,” she shared, “and work with international partners to develop long-term sustainable educational projects improving access to medical care.”

The ability to use technology to overcome logistic barriers is the biggest accomplishment for Amanda and ConnectMed, she feels. The most memorable patient she encountered was Roderigo, a six-year-old boy from Guatemala with a devastating burn injury to both his arms, rendering him unable to feed himself or go to school. Amanda was asked to perform surgery on Roderigo during an outreach trip. She initially refused, because she knew that without appropriate follow-up care, the surgery would leave him worse off than before. Fortunately, they were finally able to surgically correct his burn scar contractures because ConnectMed scheduled a telemedicine videoconference system to connect Amanda’s UCSD office to the clinic in his remote village. They taught the local providers how to do wound care and physical therapy through weekly teleconferencing. Amanda smiled, “Roderigo has now regained full function of his arms and hands and has blossomed as a vibrant school boy in his village.”

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Name: Amanda Gosman
Community: Leucadia
Volunteer Affiliation: ConnectMed International
Profession: Plastic Surgeon, UCSD Associate Professor and Director of Craniofacial and Pediatric Plastic Surgery, Chief of Plastic Surgery at Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego
Family: Husband – Justin Brown; Daughter – Xara
Interests: Surfing, horses, travel, and food
Favorite Local Spots: Beacon’s Beach, South Ponto Beach, San Diego Botanic Garden, Q’ero Restaurant


When not working to provide medical care around the globe, Amanda loves riding horses – she started riding at five years old – and surfing. She learned about Leucadia after surfing at Beacon’s Beach and knew that was where she’d end up living. She and her husband/best friend Justin Brown have lived in Leucadia for five years, now with the addition of their “hilarious” four-year-old daughter Xara, “who is the center of our life,” Amanda said. They also have a border collie puppy named Ari who keeps them on their toes.volunteer_gosman5

Amanda thinks people would be most surprised to know how much she can eat and how much she loves working for free. But no one would be surprised to hear her one wish for ConnectMed: “To win the lottery so we can continue to grow our network and improve access to medical care around the world.”

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Group: ConnectMed International
Mission: ConnectMed’s mission is the promotion of sustainable, multi-disciplinary health care and education through the combination of direct medical care, educational partnerships, and interactive telemedicine networks with international sites.
Contact: 619-800-5349; www.connectmed.org