In this M3 Conference Plenary Session, Lani Ackerman, MD, FAAP, takes us beyond traditional medical missions and has us rethink evangelism and discipleship in healthcare. As the landscape of medical missions is changing, Dr. Ackerman presents opportunities that are available to continue reaching the unreached around the world.

With the closure and government take-over of more and more mission hospitals, the original need for and mission of the traditional “mission hospital” is changing. In addition, expansion of health care and medical education (nursing, medical schools, etc.) in middle and low-income countries is shifting the demand and desire for “foreign” health-care professionals who may be seen as competition. In many parts of the world where the gospel is most needed, faith- based clinics and hospitals are not permitted. In contrast, opportunities within the country itself – government facilities, health-care education, community based-organizations, NGOs, and INGOs have opportunities that allow the Christ-follower to serve as part of the local community and usually provide a salary so that no funds for living expenses (support-raising) is needed.

As traditional medical missions started changing, Dr. Ackerman and her husband co-founded Health Environmental Learning Program (H.E.L.P.) in 1999, a non-profit international Christian community development organization working in the Himalayas of Asia. Click here to learn more about their programs and projects.