Dr. Julius Ebinu joins On-Belay Missions team

The On-Belay Medical Missions team received a jolt of energy when Dr. Julius Ebinu, M.D., Ph.D. joined our missions team.  He made an immediate impact.

Dr. Ebinu is a neurosurgeon at UC Davis in Sacramento, CA.  He has completed two neurosurgical fellowships; Complex/Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery and Neuro-oncology and has a Ph.D in Biochemistry.

While his resume is impressive, his drive to advance brain and spine care in Uganda is its equal.  Dr. Ebinu was born in Mbale, Uganda but his family moved to Canada when he was eight years old. He still has family there but has been unable to return to Uganda until he traveled with our team.  

Dr. Ebinu learned of On-Belay from a colleague and within a few weeks he cleared his schedule and was on his way to Africa.  It was positive energy that affected our entire team.  

Throughout the week our team performed pediatric scoliosis surgeries, trauma, spine tumor, TB, etc…  Every evening there were dinners with staff, surgeons, and Dr. Ebinu’’s family. It was not uncommon for Julius to have 8-10 residents and staff crowding his surgical table.  

The last day at Mulago was stressful.  Dr. Ebinu had met a lady in clinic a few days earlier with a tumor at the base of her skull who was mostly paralyzed and could not walk.  A difficult surgery in the US, but much more challenging without a surgical microscope or the specialized neurosurgical tools he enjoys in the US.  

But, sometimes life throws a curveball and you are the only one with a bat in your hand.  I am sure there were anxious moments for Julius and our team kept one eye on the clock for most of the morning.  The surgery was completed and Dr. Ebinu left Uganda unsure of its success. All he could do was return home and wait for news, and a few weeks later, he received the video below.