A Doctor's Journey: what I learned about women, healing, and myself in Eritrea
Dr. Mary Lake Polan takes us on a compelling journey into Eritrea, where she started a surgical clinic to offer life-changing care to African women. Dr. Polan describes how she and her surgical team offered the care and compassion that forever changed the lives of their African patients, in a story that will inspire readers to believe that they, too, can make a difference. More
Dr. Mary Lake Polan takes us on a compelling journey into Eritrea, where she started a surgical clinic to offer life-changing care to African women. She and her team repair fistulas, a condition that results from traumatic births and leads many African women to lives of stigma and shame. Dr. Polan describes how she and her surgical team offered the care and compassion that forever changed the lives of their African patients, in a story that will inspire readers to believe that they, too, can make a difference.
“Dr. Mary Lake Polan takes you on an unforgettable journey through the complexities of providing life-changing work to women in the developing world. With wisdom and compassion, Polan reminds us that trust and very personal relationships, more than medical technology, are at the heart of bringing care to the world's poorest women.”
--Gloria Feldt, Co-Founder and President, Take The Lead, Author of No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power
“A riveting account of a pioneering women's sexual and reproductive health initiative. Grounded in a part of the world where women inherit the burden of compliance, stigma, injury and death, it is an eye-opening foundation for understanding the challenges and complexities of restoring sexual and reproductive repair, health and dignity to the most medically disadvantaged and isolated.”
--Faye Wattleton, former President, Planned Parenthood Federation of America
“The world needs more doctors like Dr. Mary Lake Polan who are willing to grapple with and overcome the political, social, cultural barriers to getting better health care to the women who need it most."
--Pat Mitchell, media executive and producer
Mary Lake Polan, M.D., Ph.D., M.P.H., served as the chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the Stanford University School of Medicine from 1990 to 2006 and is currently a Clinical Professor, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine at Yale University School of Medicine. She is a member of the National Academy of Medicine. Dr. Polan has a long-standing interest in women’s health research and has been actively involved in international public health. While at Stanford Medical School, she initiated The Eritrean Women’s Project in 2001 and has maintained this surgical project in Eritrea to repair fistulas resulting from traumatic births.
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