Clinical Nurse Specialist Janine White traveled from Australia to Papua New Guinea to share healthcare knowledge with local nurses, community health workers and teachers. Part of her goal was to teach medical staff about first aid and the resuscitation of newborn babies, as the mortality rate for infants is high in this country.
With family members already involved in voluntary work for the Salvation Army in Papua New Guinea, Janine White was eager to contribute when the organization asked for assistance as a professional nurse.
With tremendous support from colleagues back at Manning Hospital, Ms. White was able to take along supplies that were no longer needed in Taree. She reflected on the fact that so much equipment is disposed of due to strict standards in countries like her own: ''We can't use anything after the 'best before' date, even though it's still safe.'' During her stay in Papua New Guinea, she experienced a huge contrast when seeing what amazing work people can do with little resources. In addition to the various hospital supplies, a donation of ten Baby Anne manikins made it possible for Ms. White to provide training of a group of Salvation Army health workers in Papua New Guinea.
Janine White ran three full day First Aid and CPR training days in the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea and in Port Moresby. The health and childcare workers who attended these days were very grateful for all she was able to do:
The participants learned how to listen for respiratory sounds and they practiced ventilations doing mouth-to-mouth ventilations and training with the BVM (bag-valve-mask). Correct hand placement for chest compressions was acquired along with techniques for checking the airway and the dislodging of objects with back blows and chest thrusts - all by the use of the ten donated low-cost Baby Anne manikins. Janine White says "I should also mention that they loved their little dark skinned manikins and called them 'Papuan Babies!' They will continue to use them to further assist in their practical training sessions."
Being able to help so many people practice and learn with just a few and inexpensive tools at hand, has been a tremendous encouragement for Janine White. She now has a list of things she wants to do to further help the healthcare workers in Papua New Guinea. Future fundraising endeavors will hopefully help her pursue her ambition and enable her to provide more training and education of healthcare workers in Papua New Guinea in the time to come.