13 Aug 2007

Australian plastic surgeons to perform operations in Samoa

1:42 pm on 13 August 2007

A plastic surgery team from Australia is in Samoa this week to assist the National Health Services to conduct free specialist clinics.

The team will also perform plastic and reconstructive surgery and train local medical personnel.

The group is made up of a plastic surgeon and anaesthetist who have both volunteered their time for the Interplast programme.

The Australian government funds about 50 surgical teams every year in the Pacific, including three in Samoa which was the first country visited by an Interplast team when the volunteer organisation began in 1983.

Under AusAID's Pacific Islands Programme, the assistance fills specific gaps in local medical services and provides on-the-job training to local medical staff.

Since 1995 medical volunteers have provided clinical visits to eleven Pacific Island countries undertaking about 37,500 consultations and 11,000 surgical procedures.