My first day in Macedonia was spent exploring the beautiful capital city of Skopje. Pictured is the stone bridge, in front of the national archaeological museum. Other nearby attractions I saw included the Alexander the great (warrior on a horse) statue in Macedonia square, the Skopje fortress and the old bazaar.
Excited to be travelling to Ohrid, where the Emergency Medicine Summer School was held. We stopped part way through the four-hour journey at a typical Macedonian bakery. I particularly enjoyed the delicious coffee served in this part of the world!
Following the opening ceremony with an official welcome from the European Medical Students Association (EMSA) Macedonia President, the cocktail party was an excellent opportunity to meet new international friends!
The first of many practical workshops. Developing my suturing skills practicing on a suturing pad, a banana and finally a porcine thigh (pictured).
After a brief lecture on orthopaedic trauma, it was time for more practical sessions. Here we had the opportunity to practice cast immobilisation. A short backslab cast, as shown here, would be used for a distal fracture of the radius.
Exploring Ohrid city centre. Often referred to as the ‘Jerusalem of the Balkans’, Ohrid previously had 365 churches, one for every day of the year! Here we are standing in front of the Church of St. Sophia.
The church of St. John at Kaneo, a typical byzantine style church, which overlooks Lake Ohrid. This is one of the oldest and deepest lakes in Europe at a staggering 300m deep and three million years old.
Learning how to do a surgical tracheotomy. This involves the insertion of a tube directly into the windpipe, enabling someone to breath without the use of his or her mouth and nose.
Practising tracheal intubation. This is often used for critically ill patients or those being anaesthetised in order to facilitate mechanical ventilation.
After a long day of lectures and workshops, we sampled some typical Macedonian cuisine at a restaurant by the beach.
Experiencing the nightlife in Macedonia. There was a huge diversity in the music; perfect for a very international group!
Practising phlebotomy on a dummy arm. Of course, gloves would be worn when doing this on a real patient!
On the terrace of the hotel, with a view of the lovely lake in the background. This summer school was organised by the Macedonian branch of the European Medical Students Association (EMSA), which aims to facilitate international cooperation and cultural understanding of medics across Europe.
Time to relax and enjoy the beautiful surroundings with a lovely pedalo ride on Ohrid lake.
Watching one last sunset on the lake before we must all return to our home countries, ranging from Britain to Bulgaria. This has truly been an unforgettable experience, both educational and enjoyable, and I’d like to thank the Principle’s Go Abroad Fund for helping to make this trip possible.