Publication date: 13 November 2019

In October, Diamedica MD, Robert Neighbour, returned to Kibagabaga Hospital, Rwanda, to provide technical support for a surgical team from the International Organization for Women and Development (IOWD).

IOWD is a charity that provides free surgical treatment for women in need, particularly obstetric fistula repair. Around 1 million women in Africa suffer this devastating condition, which is the result of prolonged obstructed labour without medical help. Women are left incontinent and often rejected by their husbands and their community. Surgery can repair the damage, but many women cannot afford or access this treatment.

This was the IOWD’s 29th medical mission to Kibagabaga hospital, where they have developed a strong partnership with the Rwandan medical staff. In addition to surgery, an integral part of every medical mission is training to strengthen the skills of the hospital staff. IOWD also improves hospital facilities and at Kibagabaga has gifted appropriate equipment, including Diamedica’s Glostavent Helix anaesthesia machine and Baby CPAPs.

Robert joined the mission to provide technical support and service the Glostavent anaesthesia machines. He was also able to repair various other items of hospital equipment during his visit. IOWD Founder and Executive Director, Barbara Margolies, is enthusiastic about Diamedica equipment and the service we provide, telling Robert:

You were indispensable to our October trip.  If you hadn’t been there, we would never have been able to accomplish the surgeries that were ultimately completed.  I thank you for that.

Diamedica machines are lifesavers, and they make our work easier and with a feeling of greater safety, while we are in the operating theaters and intensive care units in Kibagabaga Hospital.  Everyone should have the opportunity to experience that kind of “safe feeling” with Diamedica’s machines!

Our thanks to Barbara and the whole IOWD team - it is a real honour to work with you to improve the lives of women in need of surgery in Rwanda.

IOWD provide free specialised surgery to the underserved women and children in low-income countries. The organization has carried out over 2,200 surgeries for women who would not otherwise have received treatment. To read more about their achievements and how you can support them, please visit

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