Wellstar Health System donates medical supplies to Connaught Hospital

This request was made in response to a national appeal by the President to all Sierra Leoneans at home and abroad to assist victims who suffered severe burns and desperately needed medical care.

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By Lawrence Williams

As a result of the November 2021 Wellington fuel tanker explosion which left in its wake colossal damage and severe casualties, Sierra Leonean born Dr. Bilkisu Sulrette Gaye, Chair of the Department of Medicine at WellStar Paulding Hospital in Georgia, USA, approached her colleagues for help in donating essential medical supplies to Sierra Leone. This request was made in response to a national appeal by the President to all Sierra Leoneans at home and abroad to assist victims who suffered severe burns and desperately needed medical care.

Wellstar Health System responded swiftly and generously procured two pallets of specialized medical and pharmaceutical supplies weighing 1,100 pounds.

As a result of logistical constraints relating to the shipping and clearing of such a large medical consignment to Sierra Leone in a short period of time, Wellstar partnered with Dri-USA, a registered non-governmental organization, to coordinate the local arrangements, identify a beneficiary (Connaught Hospital), and present the entire donation to the recipient through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (MOHS).

Connaught is the country’s largest hospital. It is centrally located in the capital, Freetown, and provides healthcare services to the underserved communities.

On Friday May 27, Dr. Ese Donna Thomas-Macauley, president and founder of Doctors-in-Action graciously presented Wellstar’s donated items to the Ag. Director of Hospitals who also doubles as the Secretary of the Connaught Hospital. In accepting the consignment, Ibrahim Foday Musa thanked Wellstar and Dri-USA, and assured them that the supplies would be used for its intended purpose.

Those who made generous contributions toward the mobilisation and delivery of the consignment include:

Dr. Guillermo Pierluisi, VPMA of Wellstar Paulding Hospital; John Keuven, CEO of Wellstar Paulding Hospital; Michael McCullough – SVP, supply chain.
Mr. McCullough also made a generous financial contribution toward shipping costs.
Lorne Tritt – ASP Global. She also made a generous financial contribution toward shipping costs.
Maria Midboe. supply chain. Kiri Sassone, supply chain. Dr. Aloysius Jackson Wellstar hospitalist and member of Dri-USA non profit organization. He further made a generous contribution toward shipping cost. Mr. Nigel Gaye who volunteered his time to arrange shipping of the supplies and made a generous financial contribution toward shipping costs. Dr. Ese Thomas, President Dri-USA.

It is relevant to note that this is not the first time Dr. Gaye and her team at Wellstar have galvanised support for the health sector in Sierra Leone. In June 2020, they organized a virtual seminar for medical practitioners at the frontline of the Covid-19 pandemic to share lessons learned on treatment Covid patients and the prevention of hospital-acquired infections. This seminar brought together over sixty medical practitioners from Sierra Leone and the United States. They presented research papers and shared vital information and resources on the Coronavirus outbreak, and identified the strengths and weaknesses of each country’s response to the global pandemic.

Wellstar Health System is one of the largest and amongst the most integrated healthcare systems in Georgia, USA. Their patients are at the centre of everything they do. It is nationally ranked and locally recognised for high quality care, inclusive culture, and exceptional doctors and caregivers. Their state-of-the-art facilities include: 11 hospitals, 300+ medical office locations, 5 health parks and much more. Their team of over 24,000 healthcare professionals provide personalised care for their patients at every age and stage of life.

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