Dr Neeban Balayasoderan (ICU Registrar) and Dr Annabelle Hughes (RMO) volunteered on an introductory fact-finding visit for five days from (December 9-13th) to learn about Gizo hospital and practice. This was in preparation for a two month trip in 2020.
Dr Balayasoderan and Hughes had previous experience working in communities & small remote hospitals, such as in rural Papua New Guinea, South Africa and rural Australia, with their time in these remote hospitals extremely rewarding, not only learning a lot, but also giving back to the communities. By spending time in Gizo Hospital Dr Balayasoderan and Dr Hughes were able to further develop their rural medicine skills, cultural awareness, and resourcefulness in clinical settings.
Both Dr Balayasoderan and Hughes had an excellent time at Gizo experiencing medicine in a different cultural and socioeconomic setting being incredibly refreshing and educational, giving a lot of perspective and sense of appreciation for the health services available in Australia!
The locals and staff were incredibly friendly and accommodating, and a pleasure to work with. Dr Balayasoderan and Hughes primarily helped in the emergency and maternity departments, helping to deliver babies and control PPH one day, and the next assessing and managing emergency cases.
One of the more challenging aspects was adapting the clinical approach in the setting of reduced availability of resources. For example, during their stay, the laboratory machine was unfortunately malfunctioning, meaning they had no access to blood results. Working in this environment certainly relies on your clinical skills!
While they were able to provide some guidelines or education on certain topics to the local staff, they also learnt a lot from the experience in terms of resource management and resourcefulness.
The process of working with DAISI was smooth and well supported, and the staff were very easy to work with. Both Dr Balayasoderand and Hughes both felt very lucky to have had this opportunity to work in the beautiful Solomon Islands and highly recommend DAISI, and hope to work again with DAISI very soon.
Dr Amanda Hughes at Gizo wharf.
Dr Neeban Balayasoderan at Gizo Hospital