Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Helping Babies Breathe

Stephen has been teaching more classes for nurses.  After teaching "Helping Babies Breathe" to nurses at our hospital and a church clinic, he had a chance to teach nurses from the surrounding communities and villages.  His description is below:
This is a hands-on learning experience to teach nurses delivering babies in remote areas of the region how to stimulate newborns to breathe.   It is a lot of new material for nurses to learn, and it changes dramatically what many of the nurses are currently doing.

The class was difficult for them because it was based on actions using an inflatable plastic mannequin that simulates babies breathing and heart beat. Their usual type of instruction consists of lectures and note taking, but not much practice. To only do hands on practice without talking was difficult for them.  Another challenge for many of the nurses is that they came from as far as an 8 hour canoe ride to get to our hospital for the training.

(You can find out more about the training at

I enjoy equipping these nurses to make a difference in neonatal mortality in the Republic of Congo, and this class in particular is very fun for me to teach.  
One reason is that because of the class structure I was able to get some help from a nurse name Millie Deleon who is working with us for this year.  
The second reason is that by offering this class we were able to build positive relations with our local health department director.
Third, it was fun to able to give out equipment to the graduates that they can take back to their villages to apply the principles that we taught them.  
Finally, I enjoyed it because the funding for me to buy that equipment came from churches in the RMD of the CMA, and they were able to have a part in this training.

Thanks again for all you do in enabling us to be here to touch lives.

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