Dr. Richard Yu, a pediatric urologist and long-time IVUmed volunteer, led a 9-person pediatric urology workshop in Kumasi Ghana from February 8-17, 2019. He was joined by:
- Paula Cruz (Operating Room Nurse)
- Dr. Bhalaajee Meenakshi-Sundaran (Pediatric Urologist)
- Dr. Vanessa Ortiz (Urology Resident)
- Dr. Sunil Patel (Urology Resident)
- Dr. Scott Stenquist (Pediatric Anesthesiologist)
- Dr. Laurie Steward (Pediatric Anesthesiologist)
- Dr. Kelly Swords (Pediatric Urologist)
- Andrea Van Lierop (Pediatric Nurse Practitioner)
The team worked with local surgeons and nurses at Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, including Drs. Ken Aboah & Arhin Addai, who helped plan the workshop.
IVUmed’s dedicated volunteers performed 35 surgeries throughout the week. The workshop exemplified IVUmed’s motto Teach One, Reach Many. IVUmed’s volunteers worked hard with local staff inside the operating room. Beyond this, Paula Cruz and Andrea Van Lierop dedicated ample time to ensuring local nurses gained a thorough grasp on the best way to handle perioperative and postoperative care.
The group thrived and enjoyed an outstanding and collaborative work dynamic. Dr. Yu commented, “this was by far the most satisfying [trip] that I have been on. In my mind, the trip was extremely successful in all of the critical areas – education, service, patient care – and every team member was fully engaged in the experience.” He added that “team cohesiveness was outstanding.”
Andrea Van Lierop beamed, “I felt like I was part of a wonderful team and so appreciated all of the opportunities to use my skills.” She left Ghana happy, commenting, “this trip made me more aware of the need to reach out to our fellow humans and help in any way we can. The most memorable experience was seeing the children after the operations and realizing we had made a difference.”
The success of every IVUmed workshop hinges on IVUmeds’ partners’ eagerness to learn and improve their understanding of urology. As always, the staff at Komfo Anoke Teaching Hospital shined during the workshop. Van Lierop commented, “the people were inspiring and so welcoming. They want to learn everything.”
We are grateful for our incredible volunteers, partners, and donors! You make it possible for IVUmed to continue expanding access to quality urological care. Thank you!