The Gift of Peter
The FOHG Maternal and Neonatal Health team have lost their major asset with the loss of Dr Peter Scott. He was the backbone of the obstetric emergencies program. Peter used an easy-to-understand language of obstetrics combined with his life’s experience of emergencies to provide the transfer of skills to his students.
FOHG had begun working on an AusAID grant to train midwife trainers in Indonesia when Peter first joined FOHG in 2009. On southern Flores where he worked as a volunteer with FOHG, the MNH program was so popular it prompted invitations for similar education for midwives from other provinces on the northern side of the island. These visits required much travel by car.
Peter loved the call of the children waving as we drove by: ‘Hullo mista! Hullo mista!’ He always wore a big smile and waved in return, happiest when he heard those children. The people of Flores did not see a great deal of tourists, and few spoke English. Initially where midwives and doctors were cautious, they embraced the team. Peter was accepted easily, especially by the midwives. The wonderful Doctor Peter Scott. They had found his instruction during the modules really worked. Peter was thrilled when he heard anecdotes on return visits that his teaching had saved a life. And that happened often over the years. Peter also expanded his experience with FOHG in 2012 to upgrade skills at the Bethesda hospital in Jogyakarta on Java.
In 2015 Peter started talking about a midwife he had met and was planning to marry. He planned his proposal with precision and couldn’t stop talking about the fact she was excited to work with him in Indonesia. It was then Ann Marie joined the MNH team.
When the Mother Ignacius hospital was developed in SoE on Timor West by Dr David supported by the FOHG team, Peter was there at the centre to assist in the skills development of the staff. He was a friend and often a consultant to the Nuns in Indonesia. They all loved him, and our trips were often interrupted due to pressing consultations for medical opinions.
In between visits to Africa and to other parts of Asia, Peter worked continuously with FOHG until his death this year. As COVID restrictions lessened he had been excited to travel again. and had approached me with plans for another trip with Ann Marie later this year.
The loss of Peter as an obstetrician is immense, but the loss of Peter as a person is immeasurable. He was one of the most compassionate, kind and considerate men you could ever hope to meet. He was brilliant at imparting his skills, knowledge and love of life to us all. The FOGH Maternal and Neonatal team will miss him greatly.
Peter, we love you, miss you and will have a place in our hearts for you always. Journey peaceably our friend.
Dr Helen Bradley,
FOHG Maternal and Neonatal team.