A Hsinchu doctor working as a medical volunteer in Papua New Guinea (PNG) described the tough conditions people there face after earlier this month removing a large tumor from a woman’s ovaries.
Lin Hsiao-tsu (林孝祖) operated on a woman whose abdomen was badly swollen at Nonga General Hospital in East New Britain and removed a tumor from the 19-year-old that was 30cm in diameter.
Changhua Christian Hospital, where he used to work, has been sending volunteer medical missions to Papua New Guinea since 2005, Lin said, adding that he took part in missions organized by the hospital to other countries.
After moving to work elsewhere, Lin continued to take part in overseas missions and went to Papua New Guinea this year.
He found a severe shortage of medical resources, with ultrasound exams extremely rare, because only three ultrasound machines exist in the country and few people know how to operate them, he said.
Nonga General Hospital, where Lin worked for five days, has only one obstetrics and gynecology clinic a week, even though the hospital is dedicated to serving women and children.
In addition to limited medical resources, local transportation is also inconvenient, he said. Many people have to walk for two days to see a doctor, which discourages many pregnant women from getting prenatal checkups or even seeing a doctor until they feel extremely unwell, Lin said.
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