Also known as Congo-Brazzaville, the country is located on the western coast of Central Africa and is home to 5.3 million people. In the early 2000s there were approximately 20 physicians per 100,000 persons with 16 hospital beds per 10,000 people.¹
In 2013 - 2014, in collaboration with Mercy Ships, SPECT initiated the first known sterile processing program in the coastal city of Pointe Noire. An initial assessment was conducted to four local hospitals to establish contacts and identify current measures for storing surgical instruments and equipment. The SPECT Team then completed eight observation visits to observe and record the flow of staff and instruments to and from the operating rooms. Gaps were identified and informational posters were distributed as well as up-to-date information on how to use sterilizers. Further, 11 staff members were invited on board the Africa Mercy to tour the sterilizing department and have the opportunity to ask questions.
Based on the findings from the landmark program, SPECT was published in the the British Medical Journal, Global Health: An analysis on limited sterile processing capabilities in the Republic of Congo, Madagascar and Benin.
"We were ignorant before we came to the training; there were many things we didn’t know because we didn’t have a book or training. We have to make changes so that we can do our job properly. This new information - it’s like giving someone who didn’t eat for a month some bread and water - nourishment for growth". – Pandzou Edouard, Nurse Sterilizer, Loandjili General Hospital