Flying Doctors to the Rescue

Infectious diseases like AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis are seen as the greatest threat to people in developing countries. But medical conditions like heart disease, cancer and diabetes are also major killers in the developing world. Treatments and medicines are scant, particularly for people who live far off the beaten track.

Dr. John Wachira, right, and his Flying Doctors colleagues travel to remote hospitals around Kenya

Dr. John Wachira, right, and his Flying Doctors colleagues travel to remote hospitals around Kenya, providing specialized medical care. Photo: Brenda Wilson, NPR

A half century ago, American and British physicians started a medical service called the Flying Doctors to airlift people out of remote eras in medical emergencies. It has now become a way to reach out to Kenyans who have long done without medical care.

As NPR's Brenda Wilson reports on Weekend Edition Sunday, the small planes of the Flying Doctors' fleet now signal the arrival of medical specialists that the locals have come to depend on.

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