Free surgeries given to uninsured Nevadans

Makayla Zurn

Free surgeries given to uninsured Nevadans

CREATED Nov. 13, 2012

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- Eight uninsured Nevadans are finally out of pain. They received free surgeries from Helping Hands Surgical Care.

26-year-old Mariana Flores has been living with an umbilical hernia for three years. She can't hold her two young children or perform normal household chores.

"It's complicated," she said. "'Cause I don't do too much."

But thanks to one local organization, her life is about to drastically change. She'll no longer be in constant pain.

"I'm so excited because I'm going to get my life back again. I'm going to be complete," Flores said.

Seven other people were given the same opportunity by Helping Hands Surgical Care on Tuesday.

The nonprofit was founded by a local doctor and his wife when they saw a need in Southern Nevada.

"Currently we have a half million uninsured patients in Clark County alone," said Dr. Kevin Petersen, co-founder of Helping Hands.

Dr. Petersen is seeing more and more of them slipping through the cracks like Mariana.

"Seeing more and more of these patients that desperately need surgery I had to find a way to take care of some of these patients," Dr. Petersen said.

This was the second Annual Charity Surgery Day, but with added support from the community Dr. Peterson hopes he'll have three and four events like this a year, so more and more people like Mariana can live and work free of pain.

To donate to Helping Hands Surgical Care or to find out if you qualify for a free surgery, go to