Galmi Hospital, Niger – GS and Surgical Sub Specialties – Ongoing Need

Galmi Hospital – Niger –  has an ongoing need for surgeons and surgical subspecialties. Shorter placements may be accepted depending on the need.

Galmi is a 154 bed hospital, (49) surgical, (59) general medicine/pediatrics, (33) obstetric, (8) ICU and (5) emergency located in a remote but well-traveled area at the edge of the Sahara Desert. The hospital also has a very busy outpatient department, with 200 to 500 people seen daily. The hospital also offers eye and dental services, nutritional education and HIV/AIDS education and treatment. The long term physician staff consists of (2) general surgeons, one of which is Nigerien (speaks fluent English) and the other an American, (1) OBG from Germany, (1) general medicine physician from Switzerland (currently serving as the interim SIM Switzerland director until March 2015), (2) American family practice physicians and (1) American internal medicine physician (on home assignment for 2014), (1) American pediatrician. The hospital serves a large part of the population of Niger, as well as those that come from Nigeria, Chad, Algeria, Mali, Benin, and Burkina Faso.

Climate: December to March temperatures range from 55° – 95°F. The hottest months are April, May and October with temperatures ranging from 90° – 110°F (often higher in April and May). The rainy season is June to September, with temperatures between 80° – 100°F. It is moderately humid during the rainy season. Homes at Galmi have evaporative coolers or air conditioning.

Language: French, but Hausa is the language of most patients.  English is used in the OR.

There are (3) operating rooms with a total of (4) tables. Anywhere from five to twelve major surgeries are performed daily averaging 8,000 surgeries per year. A large number of emergency C-sections are performed each year. There is basic surgical equipment (packs) and some orthopedic equipment. There are electrocautery machines and suction machines. No laparoscopic equipment is available. Basic suture materials are usually available but Galmi relies on volunteers to carry in donated sutures.

Galmi is a Pan-African Academy of Christian Surgeons or PAACS program participant. PAACS has established surgical training programs at Christian hospitals across Africa. PAACS residents rotate working under the surgical sub-specialists. Short term volunteers in both general surgery and sub-specialties (also anesthesia and radiology) should understand that teaching and not doing cases is their primary goal. The curriculum is similar to the United States with both formal lecturing and hands-on. Volunteers should be in direct contact with hospital field staff prior to departure to prepare for their teaching role. For more information on PAACS, visit

Majority of cases are done under spinal. Ketamine, local and general anesthesia (using halothane) are also available.

No radiologist currently on staff. Basic x-rays are available and there are several small ultrasound machines available for those who know how to do basic ultrasounds. A radiologist volunteering short term would work with current staff to improve their ultrasound techniques and interpretation of x-rays.

Lab is capable of basic serology and limited chemistries, including malaria smears, HIV testing, CD4 counts and urine/stool examination. No bacteriology capability or pathology (except GRAM stains). All pathology specimens are sent to the United States.

Religion: About 90-95% of the patients at Galmi are Muslim. Islamic beliefs are blended with traditional religious practices.

Charting: English or French. Translators are available for patient interaction.

The individual volunteer is responsible for all costs of the trip. World Medical Mission will assist in arranging all travel including international flights, in-country travel, visas, permits and/or medical licensing.

If you are a Christian physician specializing in General Surgery or a Surgical Subspecialty, currently licensed in the US or Canada, and are interested in meeting this ongoing need please contact Elaine Graybeal by email or by phone at 828-278-1605.