Posted on 24 March, 2018

Our last patient is safely off bypass!Our expert Open Heart International (OHI) surgical team, whilst mentoring their local colleagues has performed 20 open heart operations – 8 adults’ and 12 children’s hearts safely mended!!! The oldest patient is Gilbert who is 76 years of age and weighs 74 kilos, and our youngest patient is tiny “mtoto”, Phineas, 9 weeks old and weighs 3.3 kilos. Woo hoo! Congratulations!

The Intensive Care Unit (ICU) is full steam ahead and our expert ICU nurses are continuing to rise to the challenging long hours and environment. Doctors will be doing rounds first thing tomorrow and our ICU nurses will continue withpost-operative care for the next few days.

It has been a busy week. The bus takes our medical team to the hospital at 6.30am every morning, however the departure time from the Cardiac Institute has been variable. Often the theatre staff have worked late, at times finishing up after 10.30pm, and sometimes there’s been traffic delays or bus confusion and our day shift nurses have worked over 13 hours waiting for changeover. Despite their accumulating fatigue our awesome OHI team responds with a smile and an expression TIA – ‘this is Africa”….hakuna ma ta ta. Hey guys, love your work – not only what you have accomplished, but the way that you do it! BRAVO!

The families of our heart patients appear eternally grateful for this extraordinary gift made possible thanks to our Aussie dream team. Softly spoken mum’s and dad’s have told me that they heard long ago that their only option was to somehow travel to India or Israel in order to heal their sick child until I was told about “a mission is coming from Australia in 2018 – then I knew that help for my baby was on its way”.

Many of our patients have been moved to the ward and are sitting up in their beds with enormous smiles. The children are back on their feet playing together and cuddling, teasing, climbing all over our gorgeous nurses. It is a dream come true for the parents, grandparents, spouses and siblings to have their loved one helped in this way. One 4 year old boy’s father said “I thank the people of Australia for coming here – you are busy yet you have come to my country and changed my son’s life. Australia is a good country with good people. I am grateful and I will take special care of my son. Now he can live like other children.”

This week remind me of a great man’s expression – “It always seems impossible until its done.”(Nelson Mandela)

Bravo OHI Tanzania March 2018 for pulling together with the talented local medical staff and making it happen!


Tags:  East Africa,