June 2017 Zanzibar, Tanzania

The majority of Zanzibari women give birth at home and it is therefore essential that high-risk pregnancies are diagnosed early. Over the past 4 months, the PURE Obstetric Ultrasound Program on Pemba, Tanzania has continued providing increased access to obstetric ultrasound while training Zanzibari clinicians in this life-saving skill. Despite language barriers and the challenges of operating a new technology, the Pemban trainees have become ultrasound enthusiasts and continue to improve their skills. Trainees learn via bi-weekly supervised hands-on scanning, weekly lectures, and video review.

The trainees from the three hospitals, Wete, Micheweni, and Chake Chake, have scanned over 600 pregnant women and have diagnosed placenta previa, molar pregnancy, intrauterine fetal demise, oligohydramnios and ectopic pregnancy. Interestingly, Pemba women appear to have high rates of multiple gestations. In the last three weeks, Dr. Rachel Zang from the University of Pennsylvania, has assisted trainees with diagnosing six sets of twins and one set of triplets.

The PURE Obstetric Ultrasound training will soon receive the assistance of Dr. Joy Cooper, a recent OBGYN graduate from the University of Pennsylvania. I am excited to see the progress of the trainees in the final two months with final exams and graduation planned for the end of August.

Dr. Elizabeth Hall
PURE Attending Physician
Zanzibar, Tanzania