A week full of fieldwork in the Khammouane province

The solid theory part of the Karolinska Institute’s Global Health Course, has provided us with knowledge of health determinants, and how they may vary between countries. The difference in health system and the socio-economical situation is evident throughout Lao PDR, compared to Sweden. Lao PDR is one of Southeast Asia’s poorest countries.

The past week has seen plenty of fieldwork in the Khammouane province of Lao PDR. The city of Thakhek has been the base for visiting rural villages, where we interviewed families about their health situation and life in general. Local health centres, district hospitals and finally the province hospital in Thakhek was included in a full-packed itinerary, that also saw some leisurely visits to two caves. The inteviews resulted in five group presentations, where official representatives from both the Karolinska Institute and the healthcare system of Lao PDR were present.

The lack of funds, education and the health situation in the country are firmly linked to one and other, and are different in the districts and provinces of Lao.

This weekend, basically the whole group is in the city of Vang Vieng for some leasure and pleasure, and tomorrow the last leg of the course will begin in the capital city of Vientiane. Virtually all radiography equipment in the rural areas have not been in operation due to technical or mechanical errors. All in all, there are only four CT-machines in Lao PDR, of which three are in operation. No MRI’s are found in the country, but sonography is performed even in the rural hospitals.

– Catch you later guys!