Tom Catena

A surgeon, who is the only permanent doctor for 750,000 people, has been honoured for performing more than 1,000 operations a year in Sudan.

Dr Tom Catena, 53, a Catholic missionary from New York, received the Aurora Prize for Awakening Humanity.

He has worked in Sudan for more than 10 years, during the ongoing war between the government and rebel fighters.

In his speech he urged the international community to help solve a dispute blocking humanitarian relief. 

Dr Catena is the only permanent doctor in the Nuba Mountains, where fighting between President Omar al-Bashir’s government and rebels from the Sudanese People’s Liberation Movement-North has been taking place.

Listen to Dr Catena on BBC Focus on Africa.

He has been praised for overcoming problems caused by outdated or missing medical equipment at the Mother of Mercy Catholic Hospital in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains, all while dealing with victims of bombing. “The Sudanese Government is embroiled in a disagreement with rebels over who delivers aid,” Dr Catena said. “We have to inject a bit of common sense.”

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