Day 5 – Freetown: Surg+Restore Journey to Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone is a country of 6.25 million people and lies 8 degrees latitude.  It is one of the hottest and wettest countries in Africa.  It is mostly a Muslim country (60%) and Christians (mostly Catholics) make up about 30% of the population.  It is, by reputation, one of the most religiously tolerant countries on the continent.  Animalistic beliefs and fetishism also have a strong presence and infiltrate the otherwise major religions.  All religions freely intermarry and share one another’s religious holidays.

The government is a constitutional democratic republic with a president as head of state.  He presides for a term of 5 years with a two term limit.

Dr. Kathy Waldorf (Portland, OR – Vice Presdient Surg+Restore with Dr. Jallo the 2nd plastic surgery fellow from Sierra Leone to be trained in Accra, Ghana

Sierra Leone has one medical school which, post revolution, graduates between 15 and 20 doctors a year, over half of whom leave the country to seek training/opportunity.  There are fewer than 25 surgeons in the entire country, and the aforementioned subspecialties are not present in the country; Reconstructive and Plastic Surgery, Neurosurgery, Vascular Surgery, Cardiac Surgery, Anesthesiology, Hematology and Oncology, Pediatric Surgery.

Many villages resort to “witch doctors” as a result of a lack of access to medical treatment.

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