SCOTTISH DOCTORS FLY VITAL AID INTO AFRICA

Royal Infirmary professor tackles major medical issues in Malawi

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The Malawi medical team who work with Professor Adrian Stanley.

By Lizzie Healey

A senior Glasgow doctor has just completed his eighth trip to Malawi, taking life-saving equipment and expertise to help patients with serious upper gastrointestinal disease.

Prof. Adrian Stanley, Consultant Gastroenterologist at Glasgow Royal Infirmary, took with him a number of endoscopes donated by NHSGGC to help patients suffering from gastrointestinal bleeding and oesophageal cancer – both major health issues in Malawi.

Prof Stanley delivered two days of training in endoscopic skills to staff in Mzuzu, the main hospital in northern Malawi, which has a particularly high rate of upper gastrointestinal bleeding related to schistosomiasis.

Prof Stanley said: “It is humbling being able to work with and train the people who are doing all the work out there, in very challenging conditions. It is very satisfying to see the desperately needed equipment – that is no longer required in Glasgow – being put to good use.

“It is also very exciting for Glasgow support extending to the training of local staff in the management of common acute medical emergencies.”

On this visit, Prof Stanley also helped organise and act as faculty for the country’s second annual conference on Liver Disease, held in the capital Lilongwe.

Co-ordinated by Prof Melita Gordon and colleagues from the Malawi-Liverpool Welcome Trust unit in Blantyre, the conference brought together 96 clinicians from all over Malawi, in addition to key members of the Malawi Ministry of Health. Topics including viral hepatitis, chronic liver disease and liver cancer were discussed, with local audits and guidelines presented.

Prof Stanley said: “This conference was a great opportunity to share knowledge and developments, which staff can then take back to their own hospitals in other parts of the country. The conference also informed the imminent Malawi National Strategy to address Hepatitis B and C infection, with the aim of eliminating this from the country by 2030 as per the WHO target.

“As ever, it was a very busy but extremely worthwhile visit.”

brown john NHS.jpg 2NHSGGC Chairman, Professor John Brown, pictured right, said: “Professor Stanley has worked tirelessly for many years to improve healthcare in Malawi for patients suffering from gastro-intestinal issues.

“Thanks to his work and strong links, equipment which we no longer use in Glasgow can be put to good use to help patients in Malawi.

“As Chair of NHS Scotland’s Global Citizenship Programme I am proud of the work Adrian – and many more NHSGGC colleagues – do in giving up their time to work oversees, helping to build their healthcare systems and share their expertise for the benefit of others.”

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