Urgent Calls from Distant Places: An Emergency Doctor's Notes about Life and Death on the Frontiers of East Africa

Urgent Calls from Distant Places: An Emergency Doctor's Notes about Life and Death on the Frontiers of East Africa

by Marc-David Munk
Urgent Calls from Distant Places: An Emergency Doctor's Notes about Life and Death on the Frontiers of East Africa

Urgent Calls from Distant Places: An Emergency Doctor's Notes about Life and Death on the Frontiers of East Africa

by Marc-David Munk

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Overview

A profound exploration of emergency medicine practiced at the most remote and challenging frontiers of East Africa. This inspiring memoir finds hope and meaning in the face of extraordinary odds as a young physician asks: What are the ethical and moral dimensions of saving one life knowing countless others will die?

In 2008, a young doctor set out for Kenya to volunteer with the famed AMREF East African Flying Doctors Service. An emergency physician looking to make a difference, Marc-David Munk flew dozens of missions as a flight surgeon to eleven East African countries, including war-torn Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. From his unarmed air ambulance, Munk and his team treated patients suffering with severe trauma, possible Ebola hemorrhagic fever, elephantiasis, malaria, and gunshot wounds. The crew dodged corrupt officials; landed their planes on unlit grass strips, after first scaring away livestock; were threatened by al-Shabaab jihadis, navigated war zones; and clandestinely treated a U.S military serviceman.

They also experienced some of the most beautiful parts of Africa and met the incredible people who live there. The tight-knit crew was passionate about saving lives despite the risks inherent in flights across war zones.

In Urgent Calls from Distant Places, the missions described are real and compelling. Readers will meet sick NGO workers in Somalia, malnourished Ugandan soldiers, suicidal teenagers, violent cow rustlers, American special forces, albino children murdered for their body parts, and even 19th-century explorers David Livingstone and Henry Stanley. Each chapter details the medical challenges of the mission but also explores the greater philosophical questions raised by treating patients in East Africa: African history, the impact of colonialism, communism, religion, terrorism, and war. Munk examines the unique histories and politics of the eleven countries he visits.

Urgent Calls is the story of the doctors, nurses, and pilots who tackled complex and dangerous missions to save lives. The book also bears witness to the author's moral development as a healer and as a human. Urgent Calls takes readers to the wild beauty of East Africa and embraces the challenges of healing patients with humility, gratitude, and hope... one life at a time.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9798989472420
Publisher: Creemore Press
Publication date: 01/28/2024
Pages: 382
Sales rank: 354,925
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.85(d)

About the Author

Marc-David Munk is a Canadian/American emergency physician and healthcare executive. Over the past decade, he has held leadership roles at various nontraditional healthcare delivery organizations in the US and abroad. Munk grew up in Switzerland and Canada. He graduated from Colgate University with a BA in philosophy and religion and completed an MPH in international health from Boston University. After graduating from Philadelphia's Jefferson Medical College, he did residency training in emergency medicine, completed a clinical fellowship in international health at the University of Pittsburgh, and then completed a Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene at Peru's Gorgas Program. He also holds a master's degree in health care management from Harvard University. Munk lives outside Boston with his wife and his two children. Urgent Calls from Distant Places is his first book.
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