Transferring our knowledge to improve the health of Africa’s children.
In 1989, La Chaîne de l’Espoir transferred two African children to France for urgent medical attention, these 2 children were the first of many, 4 out of 5 children transferred to France by La Chaîne come from Africa.
More than 2000 children have been cared for in the last two decades, add to this 100 to 200 children operated on and cared for in their home country by teams sent out by La Chaine de l’Espoir.
Since its fondation in 1988, La Chaîne de l’Espoir has worked incessantly to develop cardiac care and cardiac surgery in Africa most specifically in the domaine of paediatrics. Missions are mainly concentrated in Western Africa (Burkina Faso, Cameroun, Congo, Ivory Coast, Mali, Marocco, Senegal and Togo) however coperation is given to other countries on the continent, countries such as Ethiopia, Gabon, Madagascar and Somalia.
From 1989, La Chaîne de l’Espoir has developed a network of doctors who seek out children suffering from cardiovascular conditions that require transfer and treatment in France, these transfers are only a short term solution to the wider problem, La Chaîne de l’Espoir provides essential training and teaching to the doctors and medical teams in many African countries.
In collaboration with these local teams, La Chaîne de l’Espoir works on the ground using visiting medical teams and/or surgeons who operate and teach techniques. Support is also given to the creation of specialised centres (the Heart Institute of Maputo in Mozambique) and in equipping existing centres (the Centre for Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery in Fann, Senegal and the Humanitarian Institute for Paediatric-Cardio of Casablanca in Marocco).
1000 heart operations on children 3 years Operation 1000 hearts has a clear objective: save 1000 children affected by cardio congenital and rhumatoide pathologies in the next 3 years by performing operations at the Fann Centre of Dakar and the Cardiac Institute of Abidjan.
The surgery, open to all sick children not only from Senegal and the Ivory Coast but from the surrounding countries such as Burkino Faso, Mali, Togo will create a dynamic medical network in the region ensuring harmonisation of procedures for the admission, intervention and after care of cardiac children. At the same time, La Chaine de l’Espoir in conjunction with the Faculty of Medicine of Dakar, the Faculty of Medicine of Abidjan and the Faculty of Medicine of Paris V will put in place a university training programme to promote the perfection of paediatric surgery, echography and cardiac surgery.
These training courses, open to all medical practitioners in West Africa (general doctors, paediatricans, cardiac surgeons, internes….)will be spread out over two years and will be certified by an inter university diploma awarded by the participating members.
La Chaine de l’Espoir will be able to continue its long term action objective of caring for children in danger and the training of local experts continuing a dynamic humanitarian service to children unjustly condemned.
Great hope for the future of medicine
The political unrest which accompanied the presidential elections of December 2010 forced La Chaine de l’Espoir to suspend its cooperation with the Institute of Cardiology of Abidjan. Since the beginning of 2012 the geopolitical situation has begun to stablise and favours the reinstatement of activities in Abidjan.
The first cardiac surgery mission has been programmed and a team from Nantes will begin operations on children and continue training programmes. The cooperation between between the Cardiac Institute of Abidjan and La Chaine de l’Espoir is paramount to the development of all panafrician projects.
The reinstatement of surgical interventions at the Institute is essential to maintain the standard of care and to the continuation of care given to sick children in the Western region of Africa. Cooperation with the Institute will also ensure that a high standard of training can be offered to practitioners.
A Reference for Africa Since1989, La Chaine de l’Espoir has been transferring seriously ill Senegalaise children to France for cardiovascular care. A protocol for cooperation signed in 2000 also allows for medical missions to intervene surgically at the Hospital Dantec in Dakar.
The increase in needs relating to the care of cardiovascular patients and the difficulties which have been encountered in the past have pushed La Chaine de l’Espoir towards a project which will create a new structure that will be dedicated to cardiovascular surgery with its own facilities for consultations, surgery, reanimation and hospitalisation.
La Chaine del’Espoir, in cooperation with the Ministry of Health of Cameroun, transfers seriously ill children to France for operations. Today, almost one hundred children have benefited from this system of medical transfer.
La Chaine del’Espoir and Doctor Edwine Wawo, cardiologist at the University Hospital of Yaounde, are working together on a project to build a Heart Institute in Yaounde. This institute will provide start of the art training in cardiovascular surgery and will greatly increase the medical services available to the densely populated central region of the country. Follow the project on this site!
Alain Deloche, founder of the Chaine de l’Espoir Alain Deloche, interview with ‘Les Depeches de Brazzaville’
Today she is a healthy mother of two children one of whom is called Sarkozy. The second experience was a little more unusual and took place 20 years later, when I operated on Father Jean-de-Dieu and then on his son named Divin.
Hundreds of children have been saved and it is always very satisfying to discover old patients amongst the new ones during consultations. It is not unusual to find that 40% of doctors stay in the country where they have been trained. It is time for Africa to develop a South-South medical cooperation with a University cursus."