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IVUmed Resident Scholar Dr. Liam Macleod Reports from Mozambique

Dr. Liam Macleod’s IVUmed scholarship experience in Mozambique was made possible by the generous support of Verathon.   During his time there, Dr. Macleod was accompanied by mentor, Ryan Terlecki, MD.  The visit occurred in parallel with a conference arranged for African urologists including several well-known surgeons and other urologists from Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Niger, Liberia, Angola and local urology and general surgery residents. Picture2

Upon arrival in Mozambique Dr. Macleod was able to quickly scrub in to assist with surgeries.  He noted, “Needless to say, the OR was very crowded with observers when I arrived.  Nonetheless Dr. Terlecki invited me to scrub in immediately.”

He observed, “There were numerous cases of urethral strictures, urethral distraction injuries, obstetric fistulas and congenital anomalies.  The northern part of the country is less developed and the roads are typically small and narrow.  Thus, when patients come to Maputo (or an urban center) for care it requires a long and arduous journey often taking several days.  The result is that many patients reside in the ward for an extended time while awaiting surgery.  We met one young lady that had been living there for a year (during which time she had undergone a fistula repair and two revisions but was awaiting a final repair).

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Of all the components of the trip—operating, caring for patients, seeing the way wards, hospitals and operating rooms are run in another country, listening to talks and participating in discussions—I think that the newly formed relationships will have the most lasting impression.  I have remained in touch via email with a number of people since being back in the U.S.  I am hopeful that these relationships will serve as a conduit for future trips and a mechanism to divert resources for improving urological care into capable hands.”

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Mozambique – November 2010

IVUmed first began its collaboration with partners in Maputo, Mozambique in 2004. Formal workshops focusing on pediatric urology and women’s health began two years later in 2006. Training has continued since then with workshops covering pediatric, women’s, and general urology cases.

Our lead partner in Maputo, Dr. Igor Vaz, is a leader in reconstruction and fistula repair. His dedication and influence has been instrumental in advancing the level of training available not only for Mozambican medical personnel, but for urologists and surgeons throughout the region as well.

Twelve physicians from three different countries participated in this year’s workshop at the Hospital Central de Maputo. During the week-long training, 57 children and adults were served. As a rapidly improving hospital and city, the site is well situated to reach and teach surgeons from neighboring countries. The impact of previous trainings is readily evident in the sophistication and quality of the urology services provided as well as the progress of the local residents.

“It was amazing to see how much they have learned and improved in the 4 years since I’ve been back. I have been searching for Mozambique for most of my professional life. It is the ‘end of the world’ urologically speaking, with only 2 fully trained urologists to service a population of 20 million. It is an amazing place to visit as the need is so great.”

-Dr. Richard Santucci

“This was my first experience on a medical mission. I was honored to be part of the team and look forward to doing it again in the future.”

-Dr. Gregory McIntosh

“Simply put, this has been one of the greatest professional experiences I have ever had. I feel that all practitioners need to have this type of experience at least once in their lifetime.”

-Dr. Britt Zimmerman

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IVUmed is committed to making quality urological care available to people worldwide.