I will be assisting with the VOOM foundation to provide anesthesia during open heart surgeries and cardiac catheritization procedures. In addition to providing anesthesia, we help educate the local medical providers on management of critically ill patients and emergency training. Additional medical equipment is brought on every trip to continue medical care after each mission trip ends.
The rural population and indigenous population of Nigeria benefit from repair of valvular diseases often caused by rheumatic heart fever. This mission assists patients who are unable to afford the payment for their care and hospital stay for recovery. Over sixty percent of Nigeria lives within poverty and ninety percent live without essential healthcare.
The expected impact is to improve the quality of life of patients who are affected by valvular disease. The lasting impact for medical providers is the training in anesthesia for open heart procedures and use of biomedical equipment. These skills not only create safer anesthesia techniques but also quality anesthesia for patients in the future.
I had the opportunity to volunteer with the VOOM foundation and participate in open heart surgery in Oraifite, Nigeria. These patients are those who have valvular disease due to rheumatic fever or congenital heart diseases. The surgeries and recovery period are completely free thanks to the foundation. Additionally, our volunteer team assists and trains Nigerian medical staff to be able to continue care once the team leaves. VOOM holds a health fair with every mission, allowing patients to be seen for primary care needs such as vision and wellness checks, medication refills, or prescriptions for chronic illnesses.