Back home they have this thing – if you’re going to surgery, you’re going to die. Take medication, go to the doctor – that’s fine. But if they’re putting you to sleep?

It’s because they haven’t seen successful surgery.

– Evelyn Felicia Somah

 Bansang Hospital_paediatric ward_Gambia_2013_Keith Thompson (1)Gambia is a tourist destination.  But what’s it like to live there?  To need surgery?  To watch a loved one suffer for lack of a safe operation?  Evelyn can tell you.

There are five main hospitals in The Gambia and five additional sites providing surgery. In February 2013 we  worked with the head of anaesthesia at  Edward Francis Small Teaching Hospital, Dr Keith Thomson and his ACTS team to equip all the ORs – 40 oximeters in total.

In February 2014 we went back, again thanks to ACTS, to make sure the monitors were working well.  We were able to test knowledge retention from the training, and answer questions about the oximeter and the work that Lifebox® does.

Turns out Dr Baylis, from the ACTS team, is handy with a camcorder – click below for a powerful look at surgical care in Gambia, and life beyond the beautiful beaches.