As a young doctor in the late 1960s, Patrick Aeberhard set out for Biafra, driven by the desire to change the world. With his colleagues, he helped to establish the first major humanitarian NGO, Doctors without Borders, and later, Doctors of the World. His life then became a series of adventures (rescue missions, airlifts, building makeshift hospitals etc.) from Lebanon to Vietnam, via Afghanistan, the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda. He strove to save the victims of armed conflict and famine, often in precarious conditions, with the duty to intervene acting as his compass and the thoughts of the great intellectuals of the time as his support mechanism. At times hampered by political constraints, he continued with his hospital work and, thanks to the many inspiring people he met in the field, he never abandoned his unshakable conviction in his mission: the responsibility to protect everyone in the name of human dignity.
Patrick Aeberhard is a cardiologist. He has been an associate professor at the Law Faculty of the University of Paris 8 for many years, and now works closely with several NGOs.
Translated from the French by Derek Scoins