This ten day gynae surgery visit to NPH hospital, Luganville, Vanuatu departed Sydney 9:30am Sun 8th July 2018, arriving Luganville (Santo) airport 5:20pm Sun 8th July. The team checked into Decostop lodge, where Dr Thomas Sala welcomed everyone. Mon 9th July 8am-9am the team met director or medical services Dr Andy Ilo in the administration building. Then DAISI team reviewed ten prepared surgical cases from 9am-11am.  After seeing the patients, the DAIS team booked a total of nine significant operations for the remainder of the week. In the end, the DAISI team did a caesarean section, one laparotomy, division of adhesions and repair of small bowel injury, six total abdominal hysterectomies and bilateral salpingo-oophorectomies (TAHBSO), and one anterior and posterior repair and sacrospinous fixation.  The last day the DAISI team was involved with teaching (Continuing Medical Education) in the afternoon. Each DAISI member prepared a 20 minutes educational talk. The last hour of this CME was a debrief where all members discussed what worked and what didn’t work, to enable improvement of future visits.  The last four days consisted of recreation from 14th – 18th July. The DAISI team departed Luganville (Santo) airport Wed 18th July 11:55am, arriving Sydney 6:15pm Wed 18th July.  Overall, there was a feeling of accomplishment, but fewer cases were prepared than expected.

vanuatu team after a swim

Gynae team (left to right): Simon Ellis, Santal Saikal, Sean Heinz, Graeme Wertheiner, Melissa Weston, Sara Valarezo & Leo Lacy, relaxing after first first day at work.

daisi team

The team end of a long week (Left to right): Dr Aalan Tong, Dr Thomas Sala, Dr Melissa Weston, Dr Simon Ellis, Scrub Nurse, Dr Sean Heinz, Anaesthetic Nurse, Dr Leo Lacy, Sarah Valazero, Dr Ritchie.


graeme and sean

Notra Dame Medical Student Graeme Wethimer with gynaecologist Dr Sean Heinz.




DAISI trip # 11 – July 2018 (O&G) to NPH, Vanuatu 


0 minors (Laparoscpic)
0 majors (Laparoscopic)
2 minors (open)
7 majors (open)
9 Total Cases