The Facts Half the population lives in rural or remote locations The problem is that most health workers live and work in cities. Source: WHO, Increasing access to health workers in remote and rural areas through improved retention: Global policy recommendations, 2010
Know your region before you go Research the common diseases –Consult with the Center for Disease Control website for up-to-date information: wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/ –Do internet searches on your country
Most Common Tropical Diseases Malaria Dengue Schistosomiasis Trachoma Leprosy Filariasis Trypanosomiasis Leishmaniasis – cutaneous and visceral TB Onchocerciasis Approx. 200,000,000 people affected Young girl affected by cutaneous Leishmaniasis
Other common diseases Acute respiratory infections –Most common infectious disease 154 million cases globally 1.9 M deaths annually Diarrheal disease –claimed 1.5 million lives last year Intestinal worms –Ascariasis most common--affects 1.2 billion globally
Need more training? Missionary Medicine Intensive from Equip International. The Gorgas Courses in Clinical Tropical Medicine. Institute for International Medicine, INMED. Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine Short Diploma courses. London School of Tropical Medicine & Hygiene The American Society of Topical Medicine and Hygiene also lists a lot of courses available in the US. Tulane University offers a Diploma Course in Clinical Tropical Medicine and Traveler's Health. AMREF, African Medical and Research Foundation.
Essential Library TALC, Teaching Aids at Low Cost, offers low cost books for health workers in developing nations. Village Medical Manual by Mary Vanderkooi, M.D., D.T.M. Handbook of Medicine in Developing Nations. Available at INMED. Where There is No Doctor, Where there is no Dentist. AMREF books. Many medical books aimed at African health. Tearfund International Learning Zone. Footsteps newsletter developed by Tearfund for Christian development workers.
Focus on essentials Hygiene –Bathing –Toilet –Laundry Good sleep –Comfortable bed –Solar power, lights & fan –Bed net Food and water –Bring what is not available –Use all that is available locally –Water filters –Solar refrigerator
Communication In rural areas with no electricity or cell towers –B-gan –Thurya In rural areas with electricity and cell towers –Cell phone –USB internet modem
Rural village outreaches Good mountain bike if no transport Rugged shoes Large water bottles Sunscreen & hat Basic meds Water filter if drinking from streams, rivers Lightweight camping supplies for overnight outreaches –Inflatable mats and pillows –Mosquito nets –Lightweight sheet –Solar shower –Tarps (lightweight) –Headlamps, solar flashlights –Snacks
OTHER IMPORTANT SURVIVAL SKILLS Cathy continues with….
Be Physically Prepared May only have your feet or a bicycle to get you around Extreme climates May have to use extreme tactics to deal with normal bodily functions –using the bush as a toilet, a bedside pee bucket, etc.
Be prepared emotionally May live in very remote locations Contact with loved ones may be limited Dealing with very ill people with limited resources Dangerous creatures may abound Language learning will be a challenge May be only American in group
Be prepared spiritually Demonic practices, spiritual oppression, spiritual warfare in unreached areas May be no church that will be able to feed you spiritually Your quiet time may often be interrupted due to urgent medical needs Will have to be disciplined to spiritually feed yourself
Closing thoughts Bush living is a challenge but can be very fulfilling You may be a part of ushering in Gods kingdom to the very ends of the earth Keep your eyes focused on true reason you are there. Praying with patients who never heard of the One True God