Registered Charity Number 1137730

Newcastle Gateshead Medical Volunteers

2016 plans for the 12th charity trip to Iraq

After a succesful charity trip to Erbil May 2015 our charity is planning to visit Sulaimanya in Kurdistan/Iraq in September 2016. We are planning to work at SHAR hospital treating  many younger guys who have knee injuries. A team of 9 will travel from the UK to provide voluntary service.


Our 5th Annual General Meeting

The AGM scheduled for August has bee postponed and will now take place in November 2015.  The date and venue have yet to be confirmed but details will appear on the members page as updates arrive.  All existing members are encouraged to come along to celebrate our entry into our 6th year as a registered charity and we also welcome new members and interested parties. We hope to see you there.


The 11th trip (resumed), May 2015

Fortunately, we were able to resume our trips to Kurdistan in the late Spring of 2015.  The trip lasted 8 days in total and a small team of 8 volunteers  worked between 2 hospital in Erbil and managed to complete 26 surgical procedures of the knee of varying complexities and see over 150 people in clinic.  On this occasion, the team also included a Consultant Physician/Reumatologist and preliminary were held to discuss the potential of setting up a Rheumatology Service  in partnership with local services.  


Also during this visit, 3 of the team were privaleged to visit a Syrian Refugee Camp about 25k outside Erbil to conduct a morning clinic.  With the help of Syrian interpreters they saw over 70 patients consisting mostly of women and children with a handful of men.  Simply treatment could be offered for most conditions but others had far more complex problems that needed to be referred to other services.


Cancellation of 11th trip

Sadly, due to the political unrest in neigbouring regions, it was felt necessary to cancel our Autumn trip in 2014. However the situation will be monitored closely and a further trip considered as soon as the situation settles.  In the meantime, NGMV decided to coordinate a blanket appeal to support the many thousands of Syrian refugees and Iraqi displaced people who have fled to the Kurdistan region of Iraq.  The appeal was very successful and led to 3 shipments of blankets and warm clothing (weighing over a tonne in total) being dispached to the Xante Refugee Camp in Duhok over a 3 month period.  


Our 4th Annual General Meeting

After yet another productive year, our 4th AGM was held on 28 August 2014. 


The 10th trip saw a retunrn to Erbil in March 2014 for 9 days.  The team of 12 volunteers completed 32 intermediate, major and complex orthopaedfic operations as well as seeing more than 200 patients in clinic.


Our 3rd Annual General Meeting

Another successful year and the time has come round all too quickly for another AGM.  The meeting will be held on Friday 16 August 2013 at 18:00 hours and is open to the public so please come along.  We welcome new members and interested parties alike.  All existing members are encouraged to come along to help us celebrate our entry into our 4the year as a registered charity.  Please see the members page for details of the venue.  We hope to see you there.


The 9th trip was to  Sulaymania 21st September 2013

This time we spent a week in another big city in Kurdistan. We were the first to operate at Shar Hospital (400 bed newly built). We also visited Farouk Medical City (fanatstic health facility).


The 8th visit took us to Erbil via Vienna in mid March 2013.  We were a team of 19 and had one more day than usual in Kurdistan which we spent very productively.  In total we performed 42 major and complex orthopaedic procedures and saw hundreds of patients in clinic many of whom received treatment as an out patient.  We were joined for a few days in the middle of trip by Professor Beglin from Turkey who assisted us with some of the complex hip replacements.  All in all, it was a very enjoyable and extremely productive trip.


The 7th Visit:   September 2012 (Clinical work, teaching and University links)

Our 7th trip to Iraq began on 26 September for the main group who, once again, travelled via Turkey and arrived in Erbil the following day.

Four of the group travelled out ahead of the main party to conduct clinics and prepare the patients and theatre lists for the arrival of the main group.  They also held the first Infant Hip Ultrasound Course, which was hosted by the eminent Professor Graf.  The course was attended by 54 Iraqi radiologist and Orthopaedic surgeons and was a huge success.  Professor Kath McCourt, Professor Deiary Kader and John Miller from Northumbria University visited a few Universities and Ministries in Erbil and Sulaymaniya in Kurdistan.


Our Charity group comprised of 16 people in total and we performed 36 primary operations and saw over 100 patients in clinic.  It was a tough trip with many complex cases but very enjoyable nonetheless.  


Our Chairman, Professor Deiary Kader, stayed on in Erbil to deliver a presentation on the Development of Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Services in Iraq at the 2nd World Kurdish Congress which was held in Erbil.  We are now planning our next trip in March 2013 and are only 1 person away from a full team.


Our 2nd Annual General Meeting

It's hard to beleive that our 2nd Annual General Meeting is upon us already but it's true!!!  The meeting will be held on Thursday 2 August 2012 at 17:30 hours and is open to the public.  We welcome new members and interested parties alike.  All existing members are encouraged to come and we will be organising a little social gathering afterwards to celebrate the entry into our third year as a chaity.   Please see the Members page for details of the venue.  We hope to see you there.


Our next visit

We now have our final scrub nurse - many thanks to everyone who helped and, of course, to our new scrub staff for volunteering.  We now have a full team for our next trip at the end of September.


The 6th Visit

We have just returned from a very successful and productive 6th visit to Erbil in the Kurdistan region of Iraq which began on 18 April 2012.  The group comprised of 17 people and this time we added a few minor upper limb procedures to our usual combination of lower limb surgeries.  In total we performed 42 operations and 129 new patients in clinic as well as reviewing patients post surgery and from previous visits.  It was endeering to see some of our patients returning for joint replacements on the other side and to see how well they were doing.  


The 5th Visit:

Our 5th trip to Iraq began on 28 September.  We travelled via Turkey and arrived in Erbil the following day.  The visiting team comprised of 13 people and we successfully performed 25 surgical procedures during our 8 days in Erbil.  The surgeries included hip and knee replacement surgery, anterior cruciate ligament reconstructions, knee arthrocsopies and hip injections.  135 new patients were seen in clinic as well as reviewing many pateints from previous visits.  


Annual General Meeting

We are pleased to announce that that we will be holding our first AGM on Friday 19 August 2011 at 17:00 hours.  All members are encouraged to come and any new members or interested parties are more than welcome to attend.  Please see the Members page for details of the venue.


The 4th Visit:

On the 26 March 2011 we made our fourth trip to Erbil. This time we expanded our work to include more complex surgery.  18 of us worked in the theatres, clinics and the wards of Zheen Hospital in Erbil. We successfully performed 32 surgical procedures including total hip and knee replacement, knee ligament reconstruction and knee arthroscopy. We also ran multiple clinics to follow our patients up and see and prepare patients for our future visits. We spent 12 days in Erbil and returned to the UK via Athens.


The 3rd Visit:

In this visit to Erbil/Iraq in October 2010 the group saw 404 patients and operated on 16 people, three of which were major ligament reconstruction operations which were too complicated for surgeons in the country to perform.


BBC report on Kurdistan:


Gateshead Hospital press release:


BBC Newcastle Interviewed our Chairman on Friday 13th August 2010 - unfortunately the video has been outdated and doesn't show on BBC digital services any longer.  


Our trip was also covered by ITV Tyne Tees in two separate interviews.

On 23rd July (Kate Fisher) and 11th August 2010 (Pam & Ian) 6pm news - see the footage on ITV Tyne Tees website:  


The 2nd Visit:

At the end on July 2010 a group of us visited Erbil in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. We spent a week treating patients with bone and joint problems. We  treated 350 patients and listed more than twenty patients for surgery at a later date. Gill Rhind and Samantha Jones spent couple of days at the local  hospital teaching nurses and physiotherapists.   


The 1st Visit:

In April 2010 we visited the Kurdistan region of Iraq where we had the opportunity to work with the Barzani Charity Foundation (BCF) in it's mission to meet the humanitarian needs of the local population in this post war region of Northern Iraq.