A shepherd in the doctor’s office

His flock of sheep remains outside the gate when Abdou comes to the hospital for medical consultation. He has not been feeling well for a while, but because of trepidation, he has never been to the hospital before. He is a shepherd of the Fulani people and does not easily open up, not even to the doctor. He had a lot of confidence in Dr. Soh and that’s why he’s knocking on our door.

The health center (300km from Dakar) was founded by Dr. Ousmane Soh. I (Tabitha) have been serving here as an interim medical director and doctor since his sudden death in September 2019. It is just a couple of miles away from one of the largest livestock markets in West Africa. Shepherds from the entire region and even from Mali and Mauritania come here to trade their livestock on Sundays. With the small team of colleagues, we do our best to continue the vision of Dr. Soh: serve the Fulani with good medical care with Jesus as our example.

I have been traveling to the village twice a month for a week at a time until the end of 2019. Since January, a young doctor has been hired and I have reduced my visits to once a month. It takes quite some effort to convince the community that the standards of love and quality set by dr. Soh are still respected. At the same time, the hospital needs to be re-organized without his visionary and dedicated presence. It is our desire to build on the foundation of trust that Dr. Soh has laid in the community We have offered free consultation and all kinds of screening for an entire weekend so everyone could experience that the work continues.

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