Two weeks for over 120 patients

Two weeks for over 120 patients

Frankfurt airport today, bombo hospital tanga in tanzania tomorrow. Private lecturer jurgen dolderer starts another aid mission of the organization interplast to africa. He will treat and operate on more than 120 patients in the next two weeks. For the first time, two civil engineers are part of the team of experts led by the chief physician of the clinic for plastic, reconstructive, aesthetic and hand surgery of klinikum bayreuth gmbh. And there is a special reason for this.

Every year dolderer takes time out for his volunteer work. The surgeon and chief physician will use two weeks of his vacation to help patients with acute or chronic burns, soft tissue tumors, gross injuries or cleft lip, jaw and palate. Cooperation between interplast and the bombo hospital in tanga has existed for years. "We are a well-coordinated team", says dolderer. "Our colleagues on the ground are already selecting patients during the months we are unable to provide support."

Prospect of a new life

For them, such treatment is nothing less than the prospect of a new life. "Those who deviate from the norm, those who are very disfigured by tumors, congenital malformations and the consequences of burns, those who don’t function, have a very low status in africa and almost no social chance", says dolderer. Interplast team operations are free of charge for patients.

It takes between 120 and 140 euros to give a person in africa a new life. These are the pure material costs for a plastic operation, such as the one dolderer will carry out again and again in the coming days. That’s all, because he and the eleven other operating room nurses, anesthesiologists and plastic surgeons who are now on their way to the tanzanian port of tanga are working for free.

This time, two civil engineers are also traveling to tanzania. Because interplast germany and also the interplast section baden-baden, which had recently expanded to include the bayreuth location on dolderer’s initiative, has a rough objective. Cliff block, a decommissioned hospital built 110 years ago in tanga, is to be reopened. To expand the capacities of the bombo hospital and also to preserve a cultural heritage.

In this house robert koch had already done research on tropical fever. According to initial estimates, the reopening of the cliff block will cost about 600,000 euros. Interplast expects to need about 150,000 euros of its own funds to start the project.

New joint institute

Dolderer is doing even more to put the cooperation between interplast and the hospital in the tanzanian port city on a foundation that will ensure even better care for the patients. Together with colleagues from bombo hospital, the interplast section baden-baden/bayreuth recently founded a joint institute. Dolderer has accepted a permanent visiting professorship at the university of tanga and has been giving lectures there in addition to his operational duties.

In the future, doctors will be able to search for the best treatment method for patients in africa over thousands of kilometers by telemedicine, and tanzanian doctors will be able to exchange information with experts from bayreuth. This should also make it possible for doctors from africa to spend time at bayreuth hospital. "It’s time to take cooperation to a new level." Red