Southampton Overseas Health and Medicine is a multi-disciplinary voluntary group working with the Trust’s International Relations Group of Southampton University Hospitals Trust and leading on overseas links and global health education for the Trust. There is a multitude of small links activity across the Trust and University; major links activity is concentrated on Nepal and in the Upper East region of Ghana.
The Nepal links activity is predominately in anaesthesia with smaller links in emergency medicine, paediatric surgery and paediatric cardiology. The Southampton-Nepal Anaesthesia Link is a two-part link with nurse anaesthesia programmes and speciality medical anaesthesia in Kathmandu. The rationale is that outside Kathmandu, there are very few medically qualified anaesthetists and anaesthesia is delivered by nurse anaesthetists (so called Anaesthesia Assistants) in district hospitals; AA programmes are in need of extra support; in Kathmandu, specialist anaesthetists often work in isolation with few opportunities for professional development–this can be helped by partnership with a large teaching hospital. Southampton activities are education and teaching with minimal clinical delivery.
The nurse anaesthesia support programme is in partnership with Professor Jha, Head of Department at Bir Hospital, Kathmandu (immediate past president of Society of Anaesthesia of Nepal) and the Nick Simons Institute, an independent Nepali based organisation who work in partnership with the Nepal Health Ministry with a remit to support healthcare workers programmes across rural Nepal (www.nsi.edu.np). This link has been ongoing since 2007 and has crystallised into regular twice yearly visits to run Nepal Health Training Council accredited Anaesthesia Assistant Refresher Training courses. Previous work has involved teaching on AA training courses at Patan hosptial, AA evalution visits in Western Nepal and individual visits to isolated AAs. A video library of anaesthesia techniques has been created in support of AA training programmes.
Speciality anaesthesia links are based in Kathmandu at Bir hospital (Professor Jha, critical care), the Shahid Gangalal National Heart Centre (cardiac anaesthesia) and Kanti Children’s Hospital (paediatric anaesthesia and surgical intensive care). The Bir Critical Care link has involved two fortnight long trips with intensive teaching and a symnposium on intensive care. The links at Kanti and Gangalal involve bilateral educational visits, teaching and nursing training.
Anaesthesia links are in colloboration with links from Southampton in paediatric surgery and surgical intensive care at Kanti , and paediatric cardiology at Gangalal.
Links in emergency medicine are in evolution; a new project is in development at Kanti Childrens Hospital.
Dr Oliver Ross
C/o Shackleton Department of Anaesthesia, Centre Block
Southampton General Hospital
Prof Manindra Baral
Professor of Paediatrics
Kathmandu Medical College
184; Baburam Acharya Sadak