• Samantha Brueggeman

Upcoming Educational Mission in Togo

On January 14th of 2022, Dr. Colleen Stice, Dr. Thomas Strawmire, and Dr. Kathleen Norton will be going on an educational mission to Togo with GPiH. With them, they will be carrying twelve rescue bags. These three veteran doctors will be seeking to educate university students, midwives, village elders, and villagers on the essential medical treatments needed in their communities. They plan to stop in Lomé, the capital city, and teach courses to university students and midwife students about the relevant medicine within their expertise. They also plan to go North to the village of Agbelouve, where they plan to teach villagers and all those willing to attend their events the relevant medical knowledge needed during emergencies related to childbirth and burns.

The three doctors will mainly draw on know-how learned from their experience to teach these communities.

Dr. Kathleen Norton, a retired OB/GYN, will teach a course to the midwife schools in Lomé, the midwives of the villages, and others interested in Helping Babies Breathe. The standard course will entail detecting if an infant is breathing, secretion of fluids out of an infant’s lungs through the mouth, and how to wipe them, among many other things. Dr. Norton will also show them the materials needed to help infants breathe and how to use them. This course is supposed to help midwives, and all those concerned, know how to deal with medical emergencies.

Dr. Thomas Strawmire, a nurse practitioner, will teach a course on Basic Life Support. The course will include first responder treatment and how to rescue people from the daily trauma that happens in the villages. With him, will be the twelve rescue bags that contain all the necessities needed during an emergency (a stretcher, masks, stabilizers, stethoscope, pediatric Tylenol, the list goes on). He, more than Dr. Stice and Dr. Norton, will go directly to the villagers and teach them how to deal with emergencies. He will stop in Agbelouve and all the surrounding villages.

Dr. Colleen Stice, a retired plastic surgeon, will be teaching a course on Wound and Burn Care. The rigor of this class will be the same as the class she teaches at Creighton University Medical School. She will be teaching the residents, attendees, midwives, midwife students, and the students at the University of Lomé how to treat wounds and burns.

These three doctors will hope to achieve these tasks in two weeks. These three doctors hope to empower all those they will teach, especially villagers, by giving them the necessary knowledge to tackle emergencies. They hope this knowledge will give villagers the confidence to act in these situations.

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