I just spent two days in our nation’s capital for training in emergency department ultrasound. It is yet another incredible tool that Canadian physicians have available to save the lives of our patients.
During my course, I couldn’t help but think of about patients in Ghana and in many parts of our world who often lack access to even the most basic forms of health care. What a contrast.
As I was pondering this inequality, I found myself at the foot of Canada’s Human Rights Monument. This Canadian monument issues the bold proclamation of the United Nations that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. When Nelson Mandela visited this monument in 1998 he issued a challenge, “May this monument inspire all who see it to join hands in a partnership for world peace, prosperity and equality.”
Standing there was a symbolic moment for me as I considered our ninth team of health professionals and volunteers who will travel with me to Ghana this November. We are doing exactly what this monument was designed to inspire. As we Canadians celebrate our country’s 150th birthday, 67 of us from Canada, UK, Germany and USA will join hands once again in a partnership with our colleagues at Northern Empowerment Association towards peace, prosperity and equality in Ghana.
While my teammates and I enjoy the benefits of the generations of struggle that came before us in our home countries, we will now turn to support our health care colleagues and the people of Ghana in their struggle as they seek to obtain and preserve the fundamental human rights that they too deserve. I am so thankful and so proud to be Canadian and part of this international team.