Mercy Ships Africa Blog
https://mercyships.africa/wp-content/uploads/2023/02/GLM230110_GLM_TRANSITION_AB010_HI_MID.jpg 1333 2000 shawnthompson https://mercyships.africa/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/mercy-ships-logo-menu-africa-300x138.png shawnthompson2023-02-07 21:53:572024-02-06 17:29:41Mercy Ships’ Newest Hospital Ship Prepares to Serve First Patients
On board the Global Mercy, docked in Spain’s Canary Islands, there is an atmosphere of expectation. Ever since the new ship's construction was completed in mid-2021, she’s been getting ready to serve her very first patients. Day after day, her crew has been patiently preparing for a moment that’s finally about to arrive. Soon, the newest ship in the Mercy Ships fleet will lower her gangway in Dakar, Senegal, and welcome patients on board to receive life-changing surgery.
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The day 6-year-old Sira returned from the Africa Mercy® in Dakar, neighbors swarmed their home to see the change.They knew she had gone away to receive surgery for her bowed legs. “Some of these people had seen her with bent legs most of her life,” Ibrahima, Sira’s father, explained. One by one they took in the sight, awed that her legs were now straight. Sira smiled shyly, letting them look. This kind of attention wasn’t new for Sira. She had been getting stares since her legs started curving outward when she was 4 years old.
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In a rural town in southern Senegal lives 5-year-old Awa, surrounded by her loving family. She has always been close with them – especially with her Uncle Woury. Since the moment Awa was born with a cleft lip, her uncle’s greatest wish was that she would someday find healing.
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In August, WHO's Monitoring Report on Universal Health Coverage in Africa revealed a 10-year rise in life expectancy between 2000 and 2019. This drastic increase is a consequence of the 37% drop in mortality between 2000 and 2015 following the implementation of the 2000-2015 Millennium Development Goals.
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After Zackaria was born, his mother, Binta, began seeing signs that he was suffering from cataracts — a condition that her eldest child had experienced. “I knew about Zackaria’s eyes when he was still very young, as I had the same experience with my firstborn,” Binta said. “Elimane had an operation, but his surgery was not successful. I wept when I saw that my new baby was looking and moving in the same way.”
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Just a few weeks ago a new team arrived, carrying loads of anesthesia training equipment in their luggage. Almost all the anesthesia providers in Liberia have already participated in an online training course in SAFE Obstetric Anesthesia, which was offered by Mercy Ships in partnership with the World Federation of Societies of Anesthesiologists (WFSA). Now, local Liberian anesthesia providers have welcomed teams to the country to facilitate the next level of practical training.
https://mercyships.africa/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/SNC220530_GLM_INAUGURATION_JM035_MID.jpg 1335 2000 shawnthompson https://mercyships.africa/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/mercy-ships-logo-menu-africa-300x138.png shawnthompson2022-08-08 21:22:232024-02-06 17:29:55The Mercy Ships Africa Celebration: New Hope for the Future of Surgery
The arrival of the Global Mercy signifies a new era for the partnership between Mercy Ships and Africa. But she’s just one piece of a larger movement toward safer surgery. Drawing on the data gathered and analyzed at the International Symposium, representatives from several African nations met on board the Global Mercy to adopt the Dakar Declaration. "This historic document is the roadmap for the future of accelerating safe surgical, obstetric, and anesthetic care in Africa in the years to come,” said Gert van de Weerdhof.
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Leocadie cried when her baby was born, and the tears didn’t stop for the next three months as the tumor grew. Leocadie also dealt with glaucoma, meaning her vision was severely impaired while she was trying to care of her new baby. It was difficult to know how to hold him with the tumor, and others had to guide him into her arms. Without money to afford surgery, she was overcome with paralyzing fear for her son’s future.
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For more than three years, Hounsigbo lived in total darkness, cataracts clouding her vision in both eyes. Before, Hounsigbo had been busily working in her village in Togo, going every day to the forest to cut trees and weave mats out of their branches, selling them to earn a living. But now, the 70-year-old spent her nights and days in a small room in one of her children’s homes, her eyes watering constantly. If she wanted to eat something, she waited until her grandchildren brought it. If she needed to use the washroom, her grandchildren led her there. She was completely dependent on her family to survive.