WOORIDUL Hospital, Dr. Kim Kwang-Heui worked volunteer medical service in Afghanistan for 1 year.
Afghanistan is the place full of poverty and danger due to long-lasting war and political divide. Kim Kwang-Heui, treatment director of ‘WOORIDUL’ hospital(http://wooridul.com) in Pohang, finished his 1 year of medical activities in the place where air-raid siren is sounded as ever due to the engagement of Taliban rebels and returned to Korea.
Dr. Kim is a veteran of anesthesia treatment over 15 years at ‘WOORIDUL’ hospital in Kangnam, Seoul, and also had experience of extending technologies of ‘WOORIDUL’ hospital and educating foreign doctors for many years.
He decided to depart from his everyday life as doctor that has been same for decades and volunteered as anesthesiologist at Korean hospital in Afghanistan Bagram Air Field after heard the news from Inje University Paik hospital University-Industry Cooperation, to recharge his body and mind and to have new vitality and challenge.
Dr. Kim took charge of the education of local medical personnel (doctors, nurses, medical technicians and so on), outpatient treatment (Pain Clinics) and anesthetization on surgical patients.
The expectation and satisfaction on the technical skills of Korean medical personnel are high, so the hospital was full of people not only from the local area, Parwan, but also the capital Kabul and further areas who came to receive treatment all the time.
Bagram, which the Korean hospital is located, was always menaced with danger of bombing by Taliban rebels. However director Kim didn’t care. This situation had already become his daily life.
Dr. Kim said Afghanistan is still put on difficult situation due to war, division and famine, and so is the state that desperately needs attention and help from the whole world.
The strict Sharia rule and violation of human rights still remain in the state.
Especially, the female patients cover their whole bodies including their faces and eyes with burka, so many time was cost on the treatment, and it was difficult to get agreement from protectors such as husbands to treat women and children, about the desperate situation in the local area.
Dr. Kim looked back on the 18 year-old girl, who was bleeding due to the osteosarcoma on her right arm that threatened her life, getting her life saved after undergoing the amputation in the Korean hospital safely due to the collaboration in treatment with American orthopedists.
He said, “Many Afghans, servicemen on Multi-National Forces – Iraq that includes U.S. Armed Forces, Polish Armed Forces, Georgian Armed forces and foreign civilians that he met, and the Korean medical personnel and administrative personnel that he worked with made him feel the wider world and so they were good memories, experience and gift that he won’t get again. Our little helping hand gives them a big help. We should turn our eyes not only on the medical activities, but education and extension services of medical knowledge and technologies.”
by Lee Jae-seung