Surgical medical officer and volunteer: Doctors Without Borders

Mohammed Dalwai

Crossing borders and breaking boundaries: that’s what 28-year-old Mohammed Dalwai, a surgical medical officer at Worcester Hospital, seems destined for. After his community service on the South African- Mozambican border, Dalwai was recruited by Doctors Without Borders to work as their emergency room co-ordinator in Timugara Hospital, on the Pakistan- Afghanistan border.

Working in an overcrowded and under-resourced venue, Dalwai sought a more proactive way to categorise and deliver time-critical treatments to patients with life-threatening conditions. In the end, the South African triage score (Sats), with its proven ability to work despite limited resources in rural areas, proved most suitable to the emergency room. But not everyone was convinced.

Dalwai spent weeks proving to local doctors that the system would save more lives. It worked and today Doctors Without Borders has adopted Sats in several countries where their teams provide emergency medical care — a major breakthrough for emergency medical care, Dalwai and South Africa at large.

— Cat Pritchard