Refugee Relief International After Action Reports

After-Action Report: Mission 2014-2 to Tanzania

Refugee Relief International, Inc. (RRII), deployed to Tanzania in June, 2014. This year's mission was at a time of increased need along the Tanzania-Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) border, as the DRC military decided to put an end to the M-23 guerilla movement. The M-23 had been responsible for many human rights violations and the violence associated with this group was responsible for many refugees relocating to the eastern shores of Lake Tanganyika. Our mission centered on this area, and our team treated approximately 650 medical and surgical patients during our time on the ground. Specifically, the town of Kirondo, and the villages of Kipili and Karenge on the mainland, and Ulwile Island in Lake Tanganyika. Most of our patients did not have access to care due to lack of transportation to the district health center, and the money to pay for even basic medication. As in previous years, the majority of the patients were children. A generous donation from the Draper Foundation helped us with transportation expenses and the medication that we dispensed to the patients.

The RRII team was composed of David Mohler, MD, our surgeon, who did surgical cases, as well as John and Vicki Padgett, board-certified physician assistants and professors at Touro University Nevada School of Osteopathic Medicine. This year's team also included four physician assistant students from Touro University Nevada, and two 4th year medical students from Austria. These students were exposed to cases that they would otherwise never have experienced.

Tom Lithgow, local business owner and resident, was of immeasurable assistance in the logistic support for the mission. He helped us with transportation, lodging and meals, and provided some of his staff to act as translators. As is customary, our team obtained its temporary medical licenses from the Tanzanian Ministry of Health prior to beginning work.

 

In Karenge, scores of patients wait to see the RRII clinicians
In Karenge, scores of patients wait to see the RRII clinicians

 

In an open air clinic on Ulwile Island, PA Padgett monitors a PA student examining a patient
In an open air clinic on Ulwile Island, PA Padgett monitors a PA student examining a patient

 

A refugee mother and child wait their turn to see the RRII clinicians at the district health center in Kirondo
A refugee mother and child wait their turn to see the RRII clinicians at the district health center in Kirondo

 

While her child sleeps nearby, a patient receives advice from  PA Chan-Padgett through a translator
While her child sleeps nearby, a patient receives advice from
PA Chan-Padgett through a translator