In comparison to American physicians, Iraqi physicians are limited when it comes to being able to obtain the latest medical knowledge. They don’t have access to the Internet like Americans do, nor do they have a plethora of up-to-date printed material. Well, thanks to Army Lt. Col. Mark Burnett, things have drastically changed. Now medical libraries are springing up in Iraqi hospital and colleges, all because he had the drive and motivation to make a difference.
Things started around 10 months ago, when the army surgeon became concerned that Iraqi physicians wouldn’t be able to do their jobs well without access to the proper information. So he started collecting donated textbooks, magazines and medical journals. He got the idea from another surgeon, Army Col. David Gifford. Gifford had asked for donations in hopes of trying to provide resources for the College of Medicine, which lost most of its materials after being looted at the start of the Iraq War.
Army Lt. Mark Burnett was able to make Gifford’s idea more widespread. The surgeon got further assistance from Lt. Col. Jason Wiseman, who helped facilitate donation requests through the Internet. Medical materials started pouring in the country, with thousands being distributed throughout Baghdad and other parts of northern Iraq. Of course, most of the materials are in English, but this is not a problem since many Iraqi physicians received their training in English anyway.
Due to Burnett’s work, thousands of Iraqi lives are destined to be saved. It also allows Iraqis more tools for being able to sustain themselves.
Daniel Langer says
Please pass along to fellow Badger alum, Dr. Lt. Col. Mark Burnett that if I knew how to send them I would be the first one to put a box of Wisconsin Brats in the mail to him. If that information can be provided he can count on them some time in the not too distant future.
His family should be proud to have him as a part of it and he should know that there are many of us in the US thinking of him in his efforts and overwhelmed by his efforts.
Class of ’78
PS-Both of my daughters are at UW-Madison currently; sophomore and freshment 🙂
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