Hello Friends and Family!
As you may or may not know, I am a Maternal Fetal Medicine Fellow, and I am going to Blantyre, Malawi, Africa this December and January, where I will work in the labor and delivery department of Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH).
Malawi, a landlocked country in southeast Africa, and one of the world's least-developed countries, has both a high maternal and infant mortality rate. Maternal mortality related to pregnancy is the leading cause of death in women of child-bearing age. In 2010, the lifetime risk of maternal death in Malawi was 1 in 34. In that same year, the lifetime risk of maternal death in the United States was 1 in 1800. The newborn death rate is also tragically high in Malawi, where 29 out of every 1,000 babies die in the first 28 days of life.
QECH has a large obstetrics department and while I am there I will be working with Malawian Ob-Gyn residents and medical students. At the hospital they have recently acquired a Doppler-enabled ultrasound machine. Part of my duties will be teaching the OB physicians how to use this ultrasound machine. Introducing ultrasound technology to prenatal care can help identify pregnancies at risk of adverse outcomes and plan deliveries in the hospital setting. Complications such as placenta previa, multiple gestations, fetal malposition and abnormal fetal growth are known to increase maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality and can be diagnosed by ultrasound.
Understanding the manifestations and management of obstetric and fetal illnesses and complications embodies the driving force behind my personal passion for Maternal Fetal Medicine. In QECH, I will be participating in daily inpatient care and surgical procedures. I will also be involved in patient care in the outpatient setting, including HIV clinics. Through my intimate involvement with patient care, I will be able to help not only the patients, but also the physicians. Between travel expenses, room and board and my Malawi medical license, this trip will cost me approximately $6,000. Please help me to raise money so that I can embark on this journey and improve the lives of expecting-moms who want nothing more than to care for their healthy, newborn baby.
- Shanna Snow
- Shanna Snow
- Tara Traeder
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