Consultant uses expertise .. and holidays... to help Caribbean hospitals (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
Consultant uses expertise .. and holidays... to help Caribbean hospitals
A Bradford consultant has been using his expertise to kit out two hospitals in the Caribbean and introduce new medical procedures to benefit sick patients.
Dr Sulleman Moreea, a consultant gastroenterologist and hepatologist at Bradford Royal Infirmary learned of the hospitals’ plight during a chance conversation with a taxi driver who was also an IT healthcare consultant, while on holiday with his wife in St Lucia five years ago After learning St Jude’s, in the south of the island, relied on public money, private donations and the support of foreign doctors and nurses, he decided to lend his support.
Since then he has single-handedly gathered donated equipment and provided expertise to enable two pioneering endoscopy units to open on the tiny Caribbean island.
In 2009, Dr Sulleman took £50,000 of equipment to St Jude’s, where he spent a week training doctors in gastro-intestinal endoscopy.
But disaster struck when the unit burned down 10 days later killing three staff and destroying the medical equipment.
While the hospital was rebuilt Dr Moreea sought hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of equipment donated from Pentax and Olympus to the new unit.
Having heard about what Dr Moreea had done for St Jude’s, Dr Lisa Charles, MD of the Victoria Hospital in north St Lucia, invited him to set up a similar endoscopy unit there.
“This was the chance of a lifetime,” said Dr Moreea. “To be able to bring new procedures to St Lucia from which patients would benefit was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”
The hospital already had its equipment so Dr Moreea used his annual leave to travel over and train doctors in the new technique as well as donating £30,000 of disposable medical equipment during his most recent visit.
“My aim is to institute a culture of teaching, whereby people who have been trained will in turn pass on their knowledge to their juniors as we do here in the UK,” he said.
Dr Moreea, a special endoscopy adviser to St Lucia’s Chief Medical Officer and Minister for Health – an honorary post he also holds in Mauritius – says: “It gives me enormous satisfaction to be able to help those less fortunate than us, here in the UK.
“But I couldn’t do this on my own, as there is too much to do, and so I am eternally grateful to the people and companies who donate their time, energy and equipment so generously.