Sommer Aldulaimi, MD, associate professor, gave a virtual lecture for medical students at several different medical schools throughout Myanmar, "Overview of COVID-19 in Resource Limited Settings." She gave an overview of COVID-19, its symptoms, discussed how to determine severity based on exam, and how to diagnose and manage COVID-19 with less resources (PPE, meds, oxygen delivery systems, etc.).
The medical schools in Myanmar reached out to the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine (STFM) global-health educators collaborative—which Dr. Aldulaimi chairs—and asked for urgent help. Dr. Aldulaimi heeded the call.
"The situation in Myanmar is quite dire. They had a military coup that overthrew the government in February, and now are having the worst COVID-19 outbreak with the delta variant," Dr. Aldulaimi said.
She went on to explain that the military is hording vaccines and oxygen, and arresting health care professionals who refuse to work in the military hospital, and who are trying to treat the general public. Many of the students and physicians have gone "underground" and are treating patients—the best they can—in their homes (even those who are sick enough to need an ICU). They need urgent help and someone who could help direct them on how to manage patients, since their faculty are not allowed to teach in the hospital.
"Students are not really allowed to go to the medical school. They also have limited access to the Internet, so they can't look-up treatments for COVID-19," She said.
Dr. Aldulaimi gave another presentation to medical students on Aug. 12, and hopes to give more over the rest of the year on other topics they need help with.