With a life expectancy of barely 60 years, Mozambique is one of the countries that receive humanitarian missions such as the one composed by the NGO Mangundze Salud. Chaired by Dr. Jorge Arias, president of the Argentine Association of Colonoproctology, this organization has carried out 17 missions since its beginnings in 2013. Four traveled to Madagascar and another thirteen went to Mozambique, a country located in the southeast of Africa, on the shores of the Indian Ocean and bordering Tanzania, Zambia, Esuatini, Malawi, Zimbabwe and South Africa. Twice a year a contingent of between three and twelve people lands there to attend to different pathologies in a health post, the rural hospital and the provincial hospital, performing primary care and surgeries.
These campaigns last approximately three weeks and this year there were two, spaced only about five months apart. The first was in May and the most recent one in October. The starting point of the mission is located in San Benito de Mangundze, in the Province of Gaza, Republic of Mozambique, where the Argentinean priest Juan Gabriel Arias lives, a fundamental piece in this solidarity puzzle. In addition to his pastoral tasks, he carries out different social and health projects to improve the quality of life of more than 30 thousand people. In coordination with the priest, Mangundze Salud carries out medical consultations, surgeries, ultrasounds and primary health care activities.
The relationship with EXO
A few years ago, because of the link built by EXO, the company donated a Mobile Diagnostic Center (MDC), so that it could accompany this group of health professionals. Being portable and lightweight equipment, they are ideal for this type of mission because they allow a paramedic, nurse or general practitioner to make a videoconference (via the Internet) with a specialist while performing and sharing four patient parameters (ECG, 12-lead Electrocardiogram; PANI, Non Invasive Arterial Pressure; SpO2, Oximetry, Blood Oxygen Saturation; and TEMP, Surface Temperature) in real time. The specialist can videoconference and receive the parameters on any computer or mobile device. The recorded studies can also be sent for remote assistance asynchronously. When the NGO Mangundze Health arrived in Mozambique, they noticed that they did not have a great deal of infrastructure to be able to attend to the patient's problems. Even what might be considered a standard item in a hospital, such as a blood pressure monitor, did not exist. For this reason, they began to use the CDM in the operating room to monitor the vital signs of patients, both cardiac pulse and oxygenation. In addition, the CDM is used to make interconsultations with doctors in other parts of the world. "If, for example, we have a cardiological question, we connect the equipment to the hospital's Wi-Fi or to a 4G telephone and we can make an inter-consultation with a doctor who is currently in Buenos Aires or Rosario," says Dr. Jorge Arias. The mission's physicians usually encounter an enormous number of gynecological and obstetrical consultations; and a large number of patients are usually operated on for obstetrical fistula injuries as a result of unattended deliveries. "In the three weeks that the campaigns usually last, the CDM is very useful to us because it is portable and provides the necessary tools for the basic care of people," Arias points out.
"In each mission, an average of 1,000 people are assisted and about 60 operations are performed during the campaigns", adds the priest Juan Gabriel Arias, who recalls the link with EXO built several years ago with the first donations of solar backpacks, ideal for helping Mozambican students. In Mozambique, the lack of energy reaches 90% of these populations located in the province of Gaza. The company also donated solar panels to be used in everyday situations such as charging a cell phone or a flashlight with rechargeable batteries. "When a mission arrives, many hopes are raised because they visit populations that have never had contact with a doctor, except for a technician or nurse," says the priest.