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Delivery from Dundee: Adapting and Thriving Through Covid


“We’ve had to adapt considerably over the past 15 months...” 

Those words, familiar to us all, come from Dave Tipping, our Director of Global Operations. 

Adapting has meant different things for each of us in the face of the ongoing pandemic. Perhaps, for you, it has meant homeschooling, speaking to family by video, or adding “do I have my face mask with me” to your daily checklist.

For Dave, and his seven-strong team at our Centre of Global Operations in Dundee, adapting has meant figuring out how to get 3,000 items (the typical amount of equipment within one Operating Room) shipped, delivered and installed in a hospital where it’s difficult, if not impossible, to be on the ground.

But when there’s a will, there’s a way.

Local Teams, Local Experts

The beating heart of KidsOR’s mission has always been investing in local teams - surgeons, anaesthetists, nurses and engineers - to deliver for local people. This ethos paired with creativity and ingenuity sees our Dundee-team get new Operating Rooms up and running from afar.

This means collaborating with local experts on the ground to determine hospitals’ needs and suitability to receive a room, before working on solutions from the Scottish hub.

Making use of the full scale ‘mock’ Operating Room within the Dundee warehouse is also proving pivotal. Not only can the team test each item of equipment, but they can connect with local practitioners to provide video-link demonstrations.

A glimpse at our Mock OR in Dundee

A glimpse at our Mock OR in Dundee

Such ingenuity in the face of unprecedented hurdles has seen containers delivered to Tanzania, Ivory Coast, Democratic Republic of Congo, Senegal, Zambia and Nigeria – with a further 5 containers to be shipped in May and June alone. And despite Covid, KidsOR are on track to deliver 30 operating rooms to Africa by the end of this year.

Each one of those world-class facilities represents a step towards a world where every child has access to safe surgery.

As Co-Founder, Nicola Wood, said: “Recent months have had a galvanising effect on our team. We’ve now given more than 36,000 children access to life-changing or life-saving care. Globally more children die from conditions easily treated through surgery, than from HIV, malaria and TB combined. We’re helping change that by providing the equipment and training for paediatric surgery.

“Yet there is still so much to do – and we won’t stop until we achieve our mission – a world where every child has equal access to safe surgery. Each container leaving our Dundee hub is a step closer.”

Read about our Africa 30 plan here

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