Young Patients Make Dinner for Doc to Say Thanks

November 18, 2013

Browyn O'Malley, 12, (left) and Brynn Bertie, 10, (right)

invited Dr. Mekki Saba, orthopedic surgeon

to dinner to say thanks for his care.

    In his 37 years of practice as an orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Mekki Saba has received several thank-you notes, warm handshakes and the occasional hug from happy patients. This weekend, though, was the first time patients ever made him dinner to show their appreciation.

    Saturday night, 12-year-old Browyn O’Malley and 10-year-old Brynn Bertie treated Dr. Saba to a dinner of his “favorite American food” – cheeseburgers, fries and brownies – at the O’Malley family’s home. Along with planning the menu and helping prepare the food, the girls made posters and placed them around the house with slogans like, “We Love U Dr. Saba” and “Good to the Bone!” The girls also gave thank-you speeches and even made a toast to Dr. Saba!
   “It was such a treat,” said Dr. Saba. “It was so thoughtful, and I enjoyed the dinner and the wonderful company very much!”
   September was, apparently, a banner month for youngsters and orthopedic injuries in Independence. Browyn’s older brother, Brock, 14, broke his arm in a high school soccer game Sept. 12 and required two surgeries by Dr. Saba. Neighbor and friend Brynn, broke her foot a week later,  and within a few more days, the O’Malley’s were back at Mercy Clinic with Browyn, who suffered a muscle contusion that required a cast.
   “Dr. Saba was patient, meticulous and caring,” said Dee Dee O’Malley, mom to Brock and Browyn. “He took time to explain everything to the parents and kids. We were so impressed and appreciative! All the staff was very caring and accommodating.”
   Brynn’s mom, Anne Bertie, agreed, noting Dr. Saba made a great personal connection with his young patients.
   “As adults we tend to take for granted when we have to go to the doctor that he/she will do their job and treat us,” Anne said.  “However, Brynn and Browyn enjoyed seeing Dr. Saba, even under their circumstances, as he was very caring and took the time to explain what was wrong and what he was going to do to fix it.”
   For Dr. Saba, who has permanent residences in Kansas City and London, England, and spends his work week in a local apartment miles from his wife, the home-cooked dinner was, well, just what the doctor ordered! He even brought the girls treats of his own – a bouquet of flowers and a box of candy for each.
   “I thoroughly enjoyed the evening,” Dr. Saba said. “It’s perhaps the nicest gesture patients have ever made for me, and it’s the kind of thing that makes my work so rewarding.”