Local medical missionary recalls trip canceled over Ebola outbreak

Local medical missionary recalls trip canceled over Ebola outbreak

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - When the news broke about the Ebola outbreak in Africa, Dr. Michael Overcash paid close attention.

Overcash, a member of Seacoast Church, has been on many missions to the continent. In the Fall of 2012, the church had to cancel a trip because of an Ebola outbreak in Uganda.

"We noticed it was two counties south of where we our clinic is. So we had to make the hard decision to cancel the trip completely, and it was heartbreaking, but it's the right thing to do," Overcash said.

"We can't take the chance of putting all these volunteers in harm's way. Exposing people from Charleston to Ebola is not good."

Overcash says another mission to Western Africa is planned for October and the current outbreak already is having an effect on that trip.

Unfortunately two of the physicians on that team backed out. I'm hoping they'll reconsider, giving this some time," said Overcash. "Sometimes outbreaks come and go and it may be two months from now and nobody's had it for 60 days."

Overcash says when mission trips are canceled, the big losers are the people he and the other volunteers serve.

"In other countries, we're it. If our surgeons, our doctors don't come, nobody takes care of them."

Overcash says two teams of volunteers are going on medical missions to Uganda and Burundi this weekend.

He says those two countries are far from where the Ebola outbreak happened.

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