2019 marked the second time that the Port of Dakar has welcomed a Mercy Ship to its shore. This time it was the Africa Mercy.
During the Africa Mercy’s 8-month stay in the port of Dakar, Mercy Ships was able to provide 1’407 life-changing surgeries onboard, to treat over 5’591 at a land-based dental clinic as well as providing healthcare training to 1’286 local medical professionals. All of this has been provided at no cost to the recipients and will help to improve the healthcare provision in Senegal long after the ship leaves port.
Senegal is one of the most politically stable countries in West Africa and has a steadily improving economy. However, despite this, the country still ranks 164 on the UN’s Human Development Index and in sub-Saharan Africa over 93% of the population do not have access to safe, affordable surgery.
Among the challenges faced by the 14 million residents of Senegal are malaria, widespread poverty and a high child mortality rate.
Festive arrival in the port of Dakar. © Mercy Ships
The Africa Mercy is being welcomed by one of our teams that has been in Dakar for several months in order to prepare the ship's arrival. © Mercy Ships
Traditional dances give a festive welcome to the Africa Mercy after her docking. © Mercy Ships
Mercy Ships offers free surgeries and other medical procedures to the people in Senegal. © Mercy Ships
This is the breakdown for Senegal:
116 Orthopaedic surgeries
353 Maxillofacial surgeries
158 Reconstructive surgeries
237 General surgeries
543 Ophthalmic surgeries
Mercy Ships also provided more than 12’900 dental procedures in Senegal.
The following trainings and courses have been offered to Senegalese health professionals:
• Essential pain management
• Essential surgical skills
• Primary Trauma Care
• Pediatric and obstetric anesthesia
• Neonatal resuscitation
• WHO Safe surgical checklist
• Anesthesia training
Mentoring has also been offered for the following professions:
• Surgeons in multiple specialities
• OR nurses
• Maxilofacial OR teams
• Anesthesia providers
• Clubfoot care with Ponseti method