I have worked internationally since 1989 — much of the time with Doctors Without Borders — and have lived and worked in regions of the world that face health crises unimaginable in developed countries.
I have seen many lives lost needlessly in diverse settings from maternity hospitals in Kabul to refugee camps in Zambia to remote regions of Sudan, and have agonized over how it could be different.
In the spring of 2008, while leading a medical team in Sudan, I saw a newborn resuscitation go wrong. I intervened and the baby lived, but I realized that health workers everywhere needed this skill, and many didn’t have it. Why not? Dedicated health workers simply don’t have access to critical health care information. And it is not sophisticated knowledge that they lack, but basic practical information.
In that moment, I imagined sharing a video sequence that zoomed in on the basic technique of resuscitation and envisioned the power of seeing a newborn, blue and lifeless, coming alive for health workers, allowing witness to the miracle of that first breath. I knew right then, after two decades in the field, that clinical videos were the “low-cost, high-impact” answer to my question, “how could it be different?”
I founded Global Health Media Project to help health workers save lives by using advances in information and communication technologies to make what was impossible yesterday, possible today. Our videos will be disseminated as broadly as possible — free of charge — especially to reach low-resource, often isolated health workers who have no other access to this clinical information. Our global delivery strategy is relevant now and favorably positioned for the rapid expansion of connectivity in the developing world.
I understand there are many projects of merit that require financial support but naturally believe that as a non-profit start-up, this organization is quite unique. Seldom does an initiative with such a modest degree of risk that requires a relatively small outlay to get started, offer such a great reward. If you would like to make a significant difference in the world, I can think of no better opportunity. Contributions of any amount are gratefully accepted and tax-deductible.
Thank you for your support,
Deborah Van Dyke