John has sent this report from Fantsuam Foundation in Nigeria:
Follow up to training of Fatsuam staff in Eruwa
Nigeria’s foremost rural surgeon, Dr. Oluyombo Awojobi, founder and CEO of the Awojobi Clinic Eruwa (ACE), came on a 3-day visit to Fantsuam Foundation. This followed the placement of two Fantsuam staff at his clinic where he took them through his appropriate health technology programs. And what was the reason for his visit to Fantsuam Foundation? In his words “I should endeavor to visit you in the next one month before the enthusiasm of the duo wanes”.
Surgery in the new Health Centre
He kept his word and was with us in Kafanchan from 1st Sept to 3rd Sept. During the visit, he went beyond just checking on his protégés and ran one full day of patient consultation and a second full day of theatre operations in Fantsuam's small rural health centre. He saw patients with the usual range of ailments and in one day operated on seven of them: hernia repairs, polyp excision etc. One of the patients needed to have a chest X-ray, but could not afford it. Awojobi paid for the patient to have her X-ray done. For three other patients for whom he needed more resources than were available in the rudimentary provisions of the Fantsuam operating theatre, he has offered free surgery at his clinic in Eruwa. One such patient was a 3 year old; her parents could not withhold their tears of gratitude at such magnanimity. Dr. Awojobi must be the first specialist Nigerian surgeon to visit Kafanchan in recent memory and to offer his services for free.
Recommendations for the future
Dr. Awojobi made vital recommendations on what the Fantsuam Rural Health Centre (FHRC) needs in order to make it more responsive to its host communities. Apart from ensuring adequate water supply to the theatre, FRHC needs to engage a medical doctor who shares its passion for rural healthcare. Awojobi has offered a free, intensive 3-months training for such a doctor at Awojobi Clinics Eruwa (ACE). The lucky doctor will be given all the training s/he needs to perform routine and emergency surgical procedures at an affordable cost to the people of Kafanchan. With such a doctor in place, supported by the existing healthcare workers who will receive continuing professional education from ACE, there will be closer monitoring and mentoring of the FHRC, to ensure that ACE standards are faithfully replicated.
A small grant from the African Palliative Care Association has made this possible
The Fantsuam Rural Health Centre is now set for its next phase of development to make it more responsive to its host communities, ensuring that quality healthcare is provided affordably in line with the WHO Alma Atta Declaration. Fantsuam Foundation gratefully acknowledges that the catalyst for this unexpected positive outcome has been the small grant received from the African Palliative Care Association, APCA, which made the initial visit of the Fantsuam Foundation staff to ACE, possible.