Cambridge Global Health Partnerships have been contributing to improvements in maxillofacial surgery in Botswana. This involves the treatment of diseases affecting the mouth, jaw, face and neck, usually drawing upon the work of more than one specialist surgeon. There is a long waiting list for treatment in Botswana, so patients are often referred to Johannesburg, South Africa for treatment. This is clearly unsustainable and usually distressing for patients. Since 2009, we have been sending a team of three to Botswana to help improve safety and quality of care. So far, the volunteers have operated on approximately 123 patients, including Rosinah.
Rosinah recounted her incredible experience with the Maxillofacial team from CGHP. Her story is a testament to the work of our volunteers, and the truly life changing effect they can have on people’s lives.
A nurse from Gaborone, Botswana, Rosinah had lived with a facial growth her entire life. Not only fearing that the lesion would become malignant, Rosinah had frequently been told by doctors in Botswana that it would not be possible to remove the growth.
In 2016 a Maxillofacial team went out to Botswana. Rosinah was delighted when she first met the CGHP team who immediately offered to help. She met volunteers Vijay, Julian and Val, who were confident that they could help to prevent her lesion from developing. However, Rosinah was pregnant and was unable to undergo surgery.
The following year, Rosinah received a phone call inviting her for a second consultation. The team returned in 2017, and the date of the surgery finally arrived. The growth was successfully removed, and only then did Rosinah learn about growth and type of lesion she had lived with for so many years. Since the surgery, Rosinah feels as though her life has changed completely. From Botswana to Britain, Rosinah is one of many patients who have benefitted from the expertise of this team.
“I am so grateful; you have completely changed my life […] I am so free, I look amazing.”