This last week, many of the McCropders got a chance to do something they've never done before: speak at a CME conference. During our last year at Tenwek, a general surgeon named Mike Cheatham came for a few weeks with his family, and got to know us. He helps put on an annual conference called "Missionary Medicine" which provides CME (continuing medical education) along the lines of things doctors would encounter if they were trying to practice overseas for the first time. The conference lasts for a day and a half and leads into Samaritan's Purse's annual "Prescription for Renewal," a time for doctors to get together in Asheville, NC for spiritual retreat. Jason, Alyssa, Eric, and Rachel were able to give the majority of the dozen or so lectures presented at the CME seminar (John was supposed to be there too but was unable to come due to...family issues!). It was a great chance for us to tell our story to a larger population, give thanks to SP and the post-residency program for the support they've provided, and reconnect with friends.
As we joked several times during the conference, we were basically the youngest docs there, and felt rather underqualified for the task at hand, but really enjoyed a chance to lecture and teach people some of the things we've learned these past 2 years. Eric gave lectures on suffering, typhoid, malaria, and the "word and deed" aspect of medicine. Jason gave lectures on the public health value of surgery and late presentations of surgical diseases, as well as the value of educating nationals as a missionary doc and the McCropder story. Rachel spoke on HIV in pregnancy and OB in a resource limited setting, and Alyssa talked about vaccine preventable diseases (all this to say if you'd like a 30-45 min lecture on any of the above topics let us know!).
It was a great weekend, and the leaves were at peak color in Asheville, so the setting was beautiful. We hope lots of people were able to connect with our story and will come visit us in Burundi in years to come.