What Is It?
Targeted education and training provided by ASH members to hematology personnel at healthcare institutions in the developing world. ASH partners with Health Volunteers Overseas (HVO), a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving global health through education, to bring invaluable consultation and training to hospitals in the developing world that manage hematology patient cohorts with a wide range of disorders. Training takes the form of rounds in the clinics, bedside consultations, lectures in the classrooms, training in the laboratories, and more. The objective is sustainable improvement of the management of hematology patients at these institutions.
The goals of the volunteer programs are developed based on the needs of the institutions and on-the-ground reality!
Onsite hematology, laboratory scientists, blood bankers, faculty, administrators, etc. have worked with ASH and HVO consultants to formulate the mid and long term goals of each site and create profiles for volunteer hematologists who can help fulfill these needs. Each program has an ASH member Program Director as well as on-site coordinators who oversee volunteer visits at the institution and can provide feedback on evolving needs and goals.
Where Are The Programs?
One- to four-week assignments are available for either pediatric or adult hematology/oncology clinicians, laboratory scientists and academicians. To be considered, applicants must be members of ASH and HVO (apply for ASH membership; apply for HVO membership). Volunteers from outside the United States are encouraged to apply.
Interested in volunteering? Fill out the online form to receive more information on the sites and provide your interest areas. Or you can contact Danielle Stonehirsch, HVO Volunteer Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is currently a great need for training in smear review and interpretation of morphology in both peripheral smears and bone marrow aspirates so hematopathologists are particularly desired. Blood banking and transfusion medicine experts are also highly desired at this site on a recurring basis. In addition, sickle cell experts, laboratory scientists, and blood banking and transfusion medicine volunteers are needed at Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) in Dar es Salaam.
Six hematologists work diligently at MNH to manage a large population of hematology patients, but the expertise of ASH members can make an indelible impact toward progress here in the clinics, laboratory, on-site blood bank, and classrooms. The hospital is affiliated with the adjacent Muhimbili University for Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) at which volunteers are also asked to provide lectures to supplement the hematology curriculum.
Muhimbili National Hospital
Muhimbili University for Health and Allied Sciences
This program seeks to improve training in hematology to clinicians, laboratory technicians, technologists, and students at the Mulago Hospital in Kampala by providing training in diagnosis, bone marrow and blood smear interpretations, pediatric and adult hematology, and hematologic oncology. This program also works to provide an interface between the laboratory staff and the clinical staff in the interpretation and diagnosis of blood-related illnesses. Volunteers should have a current medical license and be board-certified/eligible in hematology and/or oncology. Previous international travel and/or work experience is preferred. Assignments are from 2-4 weeks.
Current needs and goals at this site include:
- Performance and interpretation of smear and bone marrow aspirates
- Delivery of standard hematological workups
- Teaching of techniques (bone marrow biopsy)
- Performance and interpretation of smears and staining
Hematology volunteers with expertise in clinical laboratory hematology assist in optimizing the functioning of the laboratory through a systems-based approach. Pediatric hematologists/oncologists with experience running a lab are specifically recruited to work toward this goal at Angkor Hospital for Children (AHC) in Siem Reap. Pediatric hematologists/oncologists provide lectures on benign hematology and pediatric oncology to trainee physicians at the AHC and help staff at AHC implement treatment for patients with leukemia at the hospital. Volunteers are needed at specific times to provide training as part of the hematology module offered to pediatric residents. Assignments range 2-4 weeks.
Current needs and goals at this site include:
- Diagnosis and management of ALL
- Smear interpretation
- Develop trigger values for low counts (high prevelance of aplastic anemia)
- Limited bedside training with in-patient department, in-patient rounds on specific presentations
Ankor Hospital for Children
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