Dakar 2013

This is the fifth African Congress of Cardiology that I have attended: Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, Cameroon, and now Senegal.

I think I am the most well-known Italian cardiologist among Africans cardiologists, not for merits in scientific publications, but for the continued involvement and presence to improve the care of cardiac patients. Not only with charity, insofar as it may be commendable, but with discussions and proposals.

They call me simply Flavio… Burgarella is too long and unpronounceable for them.

The scholarship organized in San Pellegrino, in 2010, for young African cardiologists, and the publication and distribution of health education booklets, are evidence of my activity.

In this conference in Dakar, which I attended as founder of the association Heart Friends Around the World, I felt proud to be Italian, to be a part of that country which has given work to many Senegalese, who, by sending in their country the money earned in Italy, have made possible the economy grow and, with that, the services to the population, also in healthcare.

In Dakar cardiac catheterization are performed, pace maker are implanted for the treatment of heart diseases. There is a national health service that provides proper health care; the faculty of cardiology of the Senegalese university is involved in the training of cardiologists in other African countries. There is a reliable coronary care unit, young people can make practice and, at least in this field, after the degree young cardiologists may find a remunerated employment. Things that we cannot say that today in Italy.

I thank my patients that, joined in the association, allowed me to be able to attend to this changing reality in Africa. I thank the Hospital of Bergamo for having accepted my application to send medical equipment to the African reality that, in close up view, at least in Senegal, gives a better hope than that other view, assigned to the broadcasted images of the vessels of immigrants.