Worldwide, more than 95% of the medical equipment at hospitals and clinics in low-income countries is imported. Yet, Duke research shows that 40-95% of this equipment is broken or out of service.
Led at Duke by DGHI faculty member Robert Malkin, faculty and students have developed a curriculum for biomedical technicians in countries like Honduras, Rwanda and Cambodia to obtain the skills to repair broken medical equipment at local health facilities. Duke research has shown that with more functioning medical equipment, there are fewer wait times for surgery, more treatments available for premature infants and more accurate patient diagnosis. The training program and research could possibly lead to lower hospital mortality rates in the future.