|July 2009 · Vol. 21, No. 07
Two ObGyns, “MIA” in the developing world
The founders of Medicine in Action tell how they are working with volunteers and charitable support to improve health—especially for women—in two countries direly short on resources and caregivers
Dr. Chong is Attending Physician in ObGyn at Santa Clara Valley Hospital, San Jose, Calif.; Adjunct Clinical Instructor at Stanford University, Palo Alto, Calif.; and a volunteer member of the clinical faculty at the University of California–Davis, Sacramento.Karolynn
Dr. Echols is Director of Research and Education, Division of Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, Cooper University Hospital, and Assistant Professor of ObGyn, Robert Wood Johnson UMDNJ, both in Camden, NJ.
The authors received assistance from Angela Sykes in writing this manuscript.
There is—no surprise—a health divide between the industrialized world and the developing world, and that divide is greatest in maternal mortality (FIGURE 1). Of the more than one-half million women who die of a complication of pregnancy or childbirth each year, approximately 99% are in a developing country. (See “The great health divide: Maternal mortality” for a more detailed accounting of the problem.)