E T A PD U Rotary lifesavers returning to Mongolia Planning is well underway for a Rotary District 9980-backed Vocational Training Team (VTT) to return to Mongolia for a third, and final, journey to deliver pioneering – and life-saving – childbirth education. Mongolian Maternal Health Project VTT leader Gary Dennison, of the Rotary Club of Waimate, says the same team of midwives who travelled with him to Mongolia last year is set to go back next May. The Rotary Club of Timaru’s Julie Dockrill, Rotary Club of Gisborne (Australia) 2016-17 president Sam Turner, Bev Te Huia, of Hastings, and Melbourne’s Jo Palmer plan to provide a final phase of childbirth and emergency clinical skills education. It’s designed to build on the team’s previous training that’s credited with having already saved ten s of thousands of mothers’ and babies’ lives since the programme’s inception four years ago. The Rotary Vocational Training Team identified the need for further education in emergency obstetrics and clinical skills – particularly resuscitation – during last May’s trip, which was the project’s third phase, Gary says. Funding applications are in the pipeline to secure the estimated $85,000 needed for phase four, which includes developing a new Maternal Health Emergency Clinical Skills Training Manual, as well covering the team’s travel to provide Mongolian healthcare workers the associated “Train the Trainer” course. “Our programme is aimed at educating health professionals to plan, implement and provide professional emergency skills care to pregnant and birthing women, and their babies, in a structured, safe and culturally-aware environment. “All of the content is evidence-based, well-researched information from international peak bodies.” In response to specific requests, Gary says the team will include reading patient monitoring Infant mortality rates charts, training dropped 66 percent, while in epidural maternal deaths plummeted use, managing and controlling more than 70 percent ... infection, and the importance of handwashing. Several infant resuscitation manikins have recently been donated from an Australian distributor. “The midwives will also be sharing their knowledge and experiences of the considerable benefits of skin-to-skin contact for mums and new babies.” The first Rotary VTT visited Mongolia to launch the childbirth education initiative in 2013 – just four If you missed the story about the Vocational Training Team’s trip to Mongolia last year, check out the August edition of In Gear. From left, the Mongolian Vocational Training Team in traditional dress: Jo Palmer, Sam Turner, Gary Dennison, Julie Dockrill and Bev Te Huia.