This week has been an extremely eventful and productive one for the CCC team in Quang Ninh, Vietnam, one of the largest and most isolated provinces in the country. In just this short period of time, we resupplied our existing three clinics including the Angel Clinic at the Quang Ninh Center for Reproductive Health Care, the Lenore Pridham Grossman Clinic in Hoanh Bo, and the Dang Family Clinic in Cam Pha; moreover, we recertified our existing healthcare professionals who went on to train 14 additional nurses and doctors in visual inspection with acetic acid and cryotherapy, eight of whom will run the newly established “Dr. Jay Collie Fish Clinic” in Dong Trieu and the “Diane Pekow-Rickles Clinic” in Uong Bi.
During this weeklong mission, our new graduates under the supervision of our existing, certified professionals screened 1,073 women of whom 220 screened positive for precancerous cervical lesions, for an overall positivity rate of 20.5%. This is one of the highest positivity rates we have ever encountered, and I think this perfectly highlights why these screening, treatment, and prevention programs are so critical in these remote farming and fishing communities. At the end of our second training day, one of our new graduates, Dr. Dung, thanked us for “providing all of the new equipment and empowering [them] with the tools to prevent and raise awareness for cervical cancer in their community.”
Aside from all of this, what stood out to me the most during this mission is how efficient the previously trained healthcare professionals were. In fact, our two new clinics in Dong Trieu and Uong Bi were up and running in less than fifteen minutes of our arrival. This was largely due to the passion and motivation of our “See and Treat” professionals and their extraordinary leader, Dr. Dzung, the Director of the Quang Ninh Major Reproductive Center! I think this strongly testifies to how scalable and sustainable our program is with this easy-to-master technique and our “Clinic in a Suitcase” model. Our revisit to Quang Ninh concluded tonight with a meeting with Dr. Dzung and the Minister of Health both of whom look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship in the coming years. In fact, they have already picked out the locations for the next two CCC clinics in the Mong Cai and Hai Ha districts of Quang Ninh, two extremely remote communities only twenty kilometers from the Vietnam-China border!