Sierra Leone

Cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), including stroke, are the leading cause of death worldwide. In excess of 75% of CVD deaths occur in lower and middle income settings such as Sierra Leone. According to the World Health Organisation, stroke is responsible for 451,000 deaths each year in Africa alone.

There are currently no stroke specific healthcare staff in Sierra Leone. This partnership’s mission is to change this, developing skills and expertise to better support and improve outcomes for stroke patients in Sierra Leone.

Former Stroke Nurse, Patrick Lebbie, worked for many years in stroke care at Addenbrooke’s Hospital. Upon retirement he challenged himself to set up the first stroke service in Bo, Sierra Leone’s second city. Patrick grew up in Sierra Leone and is committed to the development of its healthcare services.

Now based in Bo, Patrick is already hard at work developing the partnership. Through hard work and campaigning the district medical officer has given him a building designated as the stroke ward. Training is soon to begin as Patrick continues to recruit nursing staff into the training programme.

In order to continue this life changing project, Patrick and along with staff at Addenbrooke’s Stroke Unit, are fundraising to kickstart activity.

Through fundraising the partnership aims to fund:

  1. Electricity for the stroke unit
  2. Raise £3000 for travel expenses for the staff, who will be mainly volunteers, to work at the unit
  3. Buy basic but fundamental monitoring equipment such as blood pressure machines.
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University of Birmingham, Older people in Sierra Leone face ‘ticking time bomb’ of health issues – study

WHO reveals leading causes of death and disability worldwide: 2000-2019

Kings College London, Stroke Care in Sierra Leone 

What is a health partnership?

A long-term link between health institutions in high and low/middle-income countries, health partnerships facilitate the flow of ideas and expertise between the different healthcare systems to strengthen services and improve patient outcomes. Health partnerships achieve this through training programmes, sharing and learning, based on the healthcare needs of the overseas partner.

If you’re interested in being involved with this partnership, head to our becoming a member or becoming a partner pages.

“Collaboration and dialogue with medical professionals overseas enables a broader perspective of the needs of less well-off populations, fosters understanding, particularly when treating migrants here in the UK, and leads to a greater appreciation of the NHS… Second hand descriptions are no substitute for being there.”

Peter Gough GP, Cambridge Global Health Partnerships Advisory Committee member and volunteer