Dr Alfred Abuhamad found the time in his busy schedule to tell us a little bit more about his and Dr Lisbet Hanson’s eventful trip to Hargeisa, and his first day there:
“It is Monday afternoon in Somaliland and the ISUOG training team is back in action after a short lunch break. Getting to Somaliland was a bit complicated for Lisbet and I as our flight from Norfolk to Newark on Thursday last week got cancelled which resulted in significant flight disruption. Thanks to our local supporter, MSF (Médecins Sans Frontières), we were able to chart a flight from Nairobi to Somaliland and arrived yesterday in the afternoon.
The flight was quite interesting, a small single engine plane, which took 6 and a half hours.
Philippe, Katya and Jude started the course on Sunday before our arrival with a set of lectures on first and second trimester. The twenty eight trainees, which include midwives and physicians from Somaliland and surrounding areas were very attentive and took notes diligently. At the conclusion of the training yesterday, Edna took us on a tour of Hargeisa in her car and showed us several sites including the market and official buildings.
Hargeisa is a bustling city of a million inhabitants and like many large cities in Africa, extremely crowded.
We had dinner together with Edna and retired to our own rooms early given the prevailing level of exhaustion.
We started at 7:00 am this morning with breakfast, and we started the training with a discussion on how to write an US report and on the knobology of the ultrasound machine (Sonosite Nano).
We then were divided into 4 scanning rooms and performed hands-on training for the team.
Overall the expertise of the trainees was quite basic. We focused on the basic elements of the ultrasound examination and noted marked improvement by the end of the session. We ended the morning with a live scanning in front of the trainees.
In the afternoon today, we are focusing on gynecologic scanning with pretest, lectures and just images.
Overall, I must say that we have been received in open arms, the enthusiasm and excitement of the trainees is obvious and the host, Ms. Edna Adan has been fabulous. Stay tuned as we update you throughout the week.”