Daniel Grace is the Medical Director at The Virtual Doctors, a Sussex charity which helps sick patients in Africa.
Their Covid-19 Response Fund has been launched to support their efforts to prevent the spread of the virus.
Using a smartphone app, volunteer doctors and medical specialists offer advice to isolated health centres in rural Zambia.
UK medics help diagnose conditions, treat patients and prescribe medicine.
Now Dr Grace, who lives in Crowborough, is warning urgent help is needed to tackle the coronavirus outbreak in Zambia. He said:
I have been involved with Virtual Doctors for two years and I became volunteer Medical Director at the start of the year.
We have more than 130 NHS doctors across the country making a difference to people’s lives abroad, which is simply amazing.
We can play a key role in supporting the Ministry of Health’s response to this unprecedented crisis.
We are perfectly positioned to recognise urgent needs and provide immediate assistance.
We have a critical time to diminish the impact of the virus.
The Virtual Doctors at based at the Innovation Centre at the University of Sussex in Brighton.
Dr Grace said that the telemedicine and e-learning techniques used by The Virtual Doctors team support social distancing by circulating knowledge remotely.
This cuts down on unnecessary referrals to distant and overworked hospitals.
The current focus in Zambia is on water sanitation and hygiene as well as simple diagnostic and education projects.
We are working with the Ministry of Health to further prevent the spread of the virus, and we aim to raise the funds needed to further equip 140 isolated health centres for three months.
Dr Grace works as a locum GP in East Sussex and West Kent. His role with the Virtual Doctors includes answering cases sent from Zambia and Malawi. He also gives talks, raises awareness through social media and helps to recruit new volunteers.
He also develops educational resources for the charity, including a Covid-19 Response bank created as part of the coronavirus project.
He helps to form partnerships and co-ordinate the charity’s team of volunteers going forward.
He hopes to visit Zambia in the next 12 to 18 months. He is a former pupil at Worth School and graduated from Kings College London in 2012.
Virtual Doctors Chairman Graham Precey is hopeful the public will support the appeal.
Since 2010, we have been working with the Zambian Ministry of Health and more recently in Malawi.
We need to work quickly and efficiently using our proven technology to fight Covid 19.
We hope many people will join us by contributing to our fund, set up with an initial £10,000 from our Board.
To find-out more and make a donation, follow the link from their website: www.virtualdoctors.org.