NATION

NZ Medical Team Conducts Operations In The North

A four-member medical team from Auckland City Hospi­tal in New Zealand is on a mission at Labasa Hospital. This is its third visit, which has been made possible through Friends
26 Jun 2018 14:10
NZ Medical Team Conducts Operations In The North
Labasa Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr. Jaoji Vulibeci (front fourth from left) and Dr Sunil Pillay (front fifth from left) formerly of Auckland Hospital, with the medical team from New Zealand and local health workers at the Labasa Hospital on June 25, 2018. Photo: Nacanieli Tuilevuka

A four-member medical team from Auckland City Hospi­tal in New Zealand is on a mission at Labasa Hospital.

This is its third visit, which has been made possible through Friends of Fiji Health.

The team started its operations yesterday and ends on Saturday.

The team will conduct laparoscop­ic surgery to 18 patients and carry out daily workshops for local health workers.

A former staff member of Auck­land Hospital and Fertility Associ­ates Dr Sunil Pillay is leading the team in its mission over the six days.

Mr Pillay is accompanied by a team of specialists including Dr Deralie Flowers, Dr Pip Walker and anaesthetist Dr Andrew Pitch.

He said their mission was to un­dertake a number of complex cases and complete training in laparo­scopic surgery for local surgeons.

“As well as training technicians in the care and maintenance of com­plex equipment,” he said.

“Patients to undergo surgeries were reviewed by local doctors. Two patients are from the Colonial War Memorial Hospital and one from Lautoka Hospital.”

Laparoscopy, also known as di­agnostic laparoscopy, is a surgical diagnostic procedure used to exam­ine the organs inside the abdomen.

It’s a low risk, minimally invasive procedure that requires only small incisions.

The surgery requires an instru­ment called a laparoscope to look at the abdominal organs.

A laparoscope is a long, thin tube with a high-intensity light and a high-resolution camera at the front.

“The instrument is inserted through an incision in the abdomi­nal wall,” Mr Pillay said,

“As it moves along, the camera sends images to a video monitor. Laparoscopy allows your doctor to see inside your body in real time, without open surgery.”

Friends of Fiji Health have devel­oped its approach to serving Fiji, in addition to treating complex cases.

The focus now is on developing the skills of Fiji’s own medical profes­sionals.

“This approach equips Fiji’s high­ly motivated doctors and surgeons with skills and tools to lead their own services,” he said.

Friends of Health Fiji is a New Zealand registered charity group dedicated in providing gynaecolog­ical, surgical and medical services in Fiji in partnership with the Gov­ernment.

It was established by former resi­dents of Fiji both doctors and non-doctors who wished to make a con­tribution to Fiji.

All of its missions are provided at no cost and are funded through cor­porate donations and fundraising activities in New Zealand.

Friends of Health Fiji chairman Rajesh Chaudhary said he was de­lighted with the progress made at Labasa Hospital through the char­ity group missions over the past three years.

“Labasa Hospital is now able to of­fer laparoscopic surgery at a level that is equivalent to many region­al hospitals in New Zealand,” Mr Chaudhary said.

“We are in our ninth year of op­erations and have been privileged to support Fiji’s health system in material ways including facilitat­ing the transfer of highly complex laparoscopic towers, related tech­nology and medical supplies.”

Labasa Hospital Medical Superin­tendent Dr Jaoji Vulibeci acknowl­edged the support and contribution by Friends of Fiji Health.

“Thank you for hearing our voices and for increasing the outreach to other hospitals in Fiji and not only focusing on Viti Levu,” he added.

Edited by Percy Kean

Feedback: nacanieli.tuilevuka@fijisun.com.fj

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