Date: 1 May 2015
RUH Anaesthetist bound for Nepal
Dr Rowan Hardy, Consultant in Anaesthesia and Intensive Care at the Royal United Hospital, will be flying to Nepal this Sunday to provide vital support to a hospital in Kathmandu, Nepal, following last Saturday's earthquake.
Dr Hardy will be working with ReSurge International – a Californian-based charity that specialises in providing reconstructive surgical care for children and adults who lack access, and building surgical capacity in developing countries.
Dr Hardy has worked with the charity previously, and it was through ReSurge that he crossed paths with Dr Shankar Rai – a Nepalese surgeon who, with the backing of ReSurge, established a hospital in Kathmandu that provides reconstructive surgical care for impoverished children and adults.
In the wake of the earthquake in Nepal, the hospital – which has around 15 beds and performs planned elective surgeries – has been swamped with people requiring emergency care. At Dr Rai's request, ReSurge is deploying volunteer anaesthetists and nurses from the US and the UK to join the team in Nepal. Dr Rowan Hardy is one of the anaesthetists who is to be deployed and he will be joined by Dr Joe Silsby from Taunton's Musgrove Park Hospital.
Dr Hardy said: "I saw the events unfolding on TV and in the papers and wished that there was something I could do to help. Then I received the call from ReSurge, inviting me to join Dr Rai's team. I jumped at the chance. Since I accepted, it has been a complete whirlwind – organising flights, handling calls and emails, shopping, packing and gathering supplies.
"I worked for ReSurge previously in Vietnam, but then we were performing elective surgeries. Delivering emergency aid in the midst of a natural disaster will be quite different, and it's a little daunting.
"I have to say that my anaesthetic colleagues here at the RUH have been absolutely exceptional. They have all bent over backwards to enable me to go – rearranging rotas, taking on my workload, covering when I was due to be on-call, and working at weekends for me. I think every one of us wants to do something to help and this genuinely has been a team effort. Even my GP has offered to meet me after work to give me my travel vaccinations before I go. Everyone has been very generous."
Notes to Editors:
ReSurge International has worked in Nepal since the 1980s and has the largest year-round reconstructive surgical team in the country – providing surgical care for 1,300 annually in Kathmandu, Kirtipur, Biratnagar, Nepalganj, Pokara, Butway and Birgunj. Since 1969, ReSurge has provided more than 105,000 surgical procedures in developing countries.
The Resurge 'Nepal Earthquake Victims Surgical Care Fund'
ReSurge is responding to the significant surgical needs of the Nepal Earthquake victims, with a 50-person Nepalese team supported by visiting clinicians from the UK and US. ReSurge has established the Nepal Earthquake Victims Surgical Care Fund to specifically support the Nepal ReSurge Surgical Outreach Program. These donations are being sent to the Nepalese team to fund the immediate surgical demand, as well as the tremendous need for reconstructive surgical care and rehabilitation in the weeks and months to come.