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Dr. Catherine Hamlin has dedicated her life to eradicating fistula in Ethiopia. Catherine and her late husband Dr. Reg Hamlin were in Ethiopia to train midwives when they first discovered the overwhelming numbers of women suffering obstetric fistula and realised that little was being done to help them.

They established the Addis Ababa Hamlin Fistula hospital, to provide the country’s very first fistula services. Today, the organisation has expanded to include five regional hospitals across Ethiopia, the Hamlin College of Midwives and Desta Mender, a rehabilitation centre for long-term patients. Hamlin Ethiopia has now treated over 60,000 women.

Listen to Catherine speaking to the BBC World Service’s Newshour in 2014 about what it was like to arrive in Ethiopia from Sydney back in 1959, and how her advocacy to then Emperor Haile Selassie for improved health services helped to sow initial seeds of change, to some of the challenges faced today.

Available online here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02fqry8 (9 minute feature)


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