Dr. Charles Ochieng Visits from Kenya

Sunday December 5 - Sunday Dec 12, 2010

Dr. Charles Ochieng is a strong population control advocate in Kenya, a country whose human population is likely to double from 40,000,000 to 80,000,000 by 2050 if present trends continue. He had never been outside East Africa until he saw this website and decided to come to Florida for vasectomy training. He was one of few Kenyan men who have chosen vasectomy for himself. Please see his fascinating story here.

Because of snow in Amsterdam, Dr. Ochieng's flight from Nairobi was delayed and his luggage did not get on the flight to Detroit. No problem; it arrived next day.

Monday December 7: First a quick call home on Skype to reassure wife Evelyn that all is well in the USA.

Preparing for our first vasectomies together. Charles watched five vasectomies on Monday in preparation for his own training cases on Tuesday.

Wine from Peru before dinner.

Elegant candlelight dinner, courtesy of Maryann's fine culinary skills.

Maryann, Doug & John Stein enjoy the company of Charles Ochieng.

Tuesday, December 7, Charles watched an office-based vasectomy reversal, then practiced with the headlight, optical loupes, and instruments.

Charles practices with 4.5x optical loupes, getting ready to be the first vasectomy reversal surgeon in Kenya.

In the afternoon, it was time for his own vasectomy cases ... and he was a very quick learner!

Honing his vasectomy skills. The patient was British ... probably the first Brit ever to have a vasectomy by a Kenyan dude!

Wednesday December 8. My brother John and I gave Charles a whirlwind tour of Tampa Bay.
First we went to the Tampa City Center where my cousin Steve in an intellectual property attorney with Gray-Robinson. Steve's associate Woody Pollack took us up to the University club on the 39th floor for the grand view of Tampa. In Nairobi, Charles had been on a 20th floor, but this was nearly twice that! He was thrilled.
He enjoyed the lobby of the Tampa City Center, decorated for the holidays, with a pianist adding to the elegance.

My cousin Steve was working at a large plant in St. Petersburg and gave us a nice tour during lunch hour.

Charles would LOVE to promote vasectomy through billboard ads in Kenya. Maybe someday. Kenya, smaller than Texas, has 40 million human inhabitants (Texas has 25 million) and a birth rate of 4.9 children per female. Projections point to a human population of 80 million by 2050. That means dwindling habitat for Africa's magnificent wildlife.

At the Pinellas County Health Department, Charles hit the jackpot. We came unannounced, but Flo was there. She inspired Charles with her enthusiasm for vasectomy and made sure that he left with a bag full of promotional materials and ideas to help encourage vasectomy in Kenya.

Then to the beach!

First Indian Rocks Beach ...

then a drive up through Bellaire Beach ...

then to Clearwater Beach and Sand Key.

Then we visited the parents of my wife Maryann, where my brother tempted their dog with a cookie. With hearty appetites, we enjoyed dinner a Benedetto's in Land-O-Lakes where my son plays piano. Thursday December 9: Charles was back to work for his second training day. Some of our patients were really tickled to serve as training cases for a doctor from a country so far away and in such great need of skilled family planning doctors. And our last patient even wanted to pose with "his vasectomy doctor". Friday December 10: Charles went to Busch Gardens to ride roller coasters for the first time, while I handled another big line-up of vasectomies in my office. Then we drove to the airport to catch a flight to Ft. Lauderdale because on ... ... Saturday December 11, we had another full day of vasectomies at the Biscayne Medical Arts Center in Aventura. Sunday December 12: a raw and cloudy day, but plenty of time to be sure that Charles left with templates for all of the promotional materials that have proven successful in Florida, including posters, brochures, and informational handouts. Then a final photo before leaving to go to the airport. Charles was a "best guest", who enriched our lives with his warm spirit and a bit of Africa. We hope he returns. Charles joined us at the NSVSI meeting in Goa, India on Jan 27-30. There he met Leo Kagabo from Rwanda and just recently traveled by bus from his home in Kisumu Kenya to Kigali Rwanda to see if he could adapt the more established Rwanda vasectomy program to Kenya.