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Anaesthesia course in Moldova

In the wake of the escalating conflict in Ukraine, Moldova, a neighbouring country, is grappling with the concern of being somehow drawn into the war. To extend support during these challenging times, the David Nott Foundation, in collaboration with the World Health Organisation, conducted two specialised Hostile Environment Surgical Training-Anaesthesia courses in Moldova. 

The refugee influx and healthcare strain

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Moldova has witnessed an influx of over 700,000 refugees seeking peace and safety by passing through its borders. Recognising the strain these precipitates to available healthcare resources, the Foundation has provided ongoing support over four courses since January 2023.


The anaesthesia (HEST-A) courses, conducted from December 11th to 16th, aimed to up skill 25 anaesthetists to better handle healthcare challenges arising from the crisis. The training spanned six days, with the first three days conducted in English and the subsequent three days in Moldovan. 

Participants expressed satisfaction with the course structure, emphasising the benefit of discussions and supervised practical activity over a lecture-heavy approach. As the anaesthetists underwent training, they raised concerns about resource availability and hospital capacity in the face of refugee movements. In response, our highly skilled teaching faculty offered valuable advice and information.                   

Innovative training models

The courses saw three UK-based faculty members delivering in-person sessions, with an additional faculty member, the Foundation’s lead consultant for anaesthesia, delivering a virtual training session on chemical weapons. 

The David Nott Foundation’s HEST-A course in Moldova not only aimed to enhance the skills of healthcare professionals but also addressed specific challenges posed by the Ukraine crisis. By fostering collaboration with WHO and adapting the course content to local needs, the Foundation continues its mission of providing essential medical training in conflict zones to save lives and alleviate human suffering.

“There is nothing more heart-warming, more fulfilling, than seeing the impact of our work through the stories of those we teach To see that connection brought to life is truly a testament to our mission.” – Hannah Graham-Brown, Programmes Officer at The David Nott Foundation

David Nott Foundation

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