Having worked in Emergency Departments for many years, Dr Mandy Masters is the ideal doctor to be onsite at Northern Provincial Hospital Luganville, developing procedures and training to make the department run efficiently.
Mr Jonathan Masters is on a surgical volunteer assignment and has been training theatre staff and whole hospital Continued Medical Education (CME) on new operations, along with performing urological surgeries with the local surgeons.
Unfortunately, the stark reality is that it takes time to acquire resources and expertise. In the meantime, the local situation is confronting. Santo is still struggling with the aftermath of Tropical Cyclone Harold and COVID-19 has stalled much of the international aid and trade. The roads are full of potholes and for people from the north and the interior, a journey may involve a horse trek and a boat ride just to get to a road. The journey to the hospital can be days so people present late in the disease process.
Mandy and Jonathan have been unpacking equipment donations and new monitors are now on stands, and a new defibrillator means people with a cardiac arrest can be shocked if needed. Mandyís teaching sessions with ambulance staff have shown them how to resuscitate people at the scene. ìI turned up to Mandyís sessionî Jonathan says ìand she had me doing chest compressions on a mannequin! (which is hot work in Vanuatu)î Mandy is also working with a team of junior doctors to help prepare them before they work in more peripheral hospitals. Her Tuesday training sessions are now well known and nurses from other wards also participate.