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International Women's Day: Carmel Doctor serves through medical missions

Dr. Margaret Inman hopes to open a culinary school in Uganda
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Posted at 1:34 PM, Mar 08, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-08 13:47:08-05

CARMEL — As the Chief of Surgery at Ascension St. Vincent Carmel, Dr. Margaret Inman has a busy schedule helping patients in Central Indiana. Some of Dr. Inman's impact, though, is worldwide.

After adopting her youngest son from Guatemala, she realized the difference in the life her three older children had versus what her son had in Guatemala.

"I've always felt as if I was lucky to be born in the United States ... I realized there's an inequity or inequality in the world and I am on the side of being in a country where opportunities are almost endless," Inman said. "I felt as if I needed to give back to places where that wasn't the case."

Since 1995, Dr. Inman has been around the world doing medical mission trips, including several visits to Uganda that started in 2013. Inman works at an orphanage medical clinic. She says medication can be scarce and there are no private rooms.

"There is no comparison; the level of care is so different but it's compassionate and whatever little we have is conservatively used to help as many people as possible," she said.

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Dr. Margaret Inman performs a medical procedure in Uganda

The area now has a blood bank and formal pharmacy. Dr. Inman wants to continue helping the people of Uganda and help them better themselves.

"Children are our best resource all over the world. They need to be respected, nurtured and cared for so that their future is better than the future of the past," Inman said. "I am so lucky to be able to be involved."

Inman's trips stopped in 2019 due to the pandemic and because Uganda didn't have resources to deal with COVID-19. She hopes to return to Uganda in July but for now, she's working on a new adventure with the hopes of helping people there.

Inman says the food volunteers and other missionaries are given is sometimes spoiled and doesn't always taste good.

"I've always liked to cook ... I got motivated after clinics every day to go back, take the ingredients that they had and try to cook things that tasted good and that the missionaries would like," she said.

She has spent the last 2.5 years going to culinary school at Ivy Tech with the goal of being able to teach kids in Uganda. Her dream is to start a culinary school at the orphanage.

As a doctor, Inman says she's an advocate for women around the world and calls the women of Uganda the country's strongest resource.

"I am so motivated by their internal strength. I love taking care of everybody in Uganda, but it is such a pleasure for me to take care of those women - and to listen to them and to understand where they come from and their burden and their love and their dreams. It's just unbelievable," she said.