29 surgeries in Region 1 during specialised outreach

Region One residents benefited from specialised medical care when a team of volunteer doctors and surgeons held clinics at the Mabaruma Hospital (Barima/Waini) recently.

A Government Information Agency (GINA) press release said the public/private sector ‘roving team’ initiative complements government’s efforts to provide specialised health care to residents in remote communities. The team has performed surgeries such as hernia repair, cholecystectomy (removal of gall bladder) and evacuation of the uterus. Twenty-nine operations were performed.

The team was led by Orthopaedic Surgeon Dr Fawcett Jeffrey, General Surgeon Dr Sheik Amir, Registrar-General Surgery Dr Cheetanand Mahadeo, Theatre Nurse Gwyneth Revers, Operating Room Techni-cian Rodlyn Howard, Nurse/Anaesthetist Terry Mohamed of the St Joseph Mercy Hospital and Nurse/Anaesthetist Godfrey Nile of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation.

Dr Jeffrey said the team accomplished its goal, surpassing the targeted 20 persons and performing a number of major and minor surgeries. He lauded the cooperation the team displayed, making the work “faster and easier.” Dr Jeffrey also said that bringing service to patients who cannot access healthcare in a timely manner helps tremendously. “That is cutting on the need to find money, and it actually cuts down on the government’s needs to provide transportation and accommodation in Georgetown. The best thing is you get your surgeries or your intervention or your management where your families are, it’s always better,” he said.

He also commended the ministry for providing doctors in interior locations so that patients can be screened, while noting that this makes it easier for the team to know which categories of healthcare personnel are needed. According to Jeffrey, one aspect of healthcare that is much needed is ophthalmology.

He also encouraged other medical personnel who are willing to volunteer their services to join the medical outreach programme. Dr Amir added that it was gratifying to help those in need.

A similar exercise was held in December and 28 surgeries were performed at the new Lethem hospital in Region Nine. An earlier outreach as also held in Mabaruma in 2010.

GINA said the next outreach is planned for Bartica.

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