KamuliFriends Visit November 2014: Progress Report
The Maternity Ward has opened its doors after the long awaited blessing from the Bishop. It certainly lives up to expectations, with plenty of room for the ante-natal and post-natal mothers as well as some private rooms for more peaceful postnatal care, some of which have already been booked. These rooms will bring in much needed income for the hospital. The new maternity ward was funded by monies raised both by the Rotary Club and by us (KamuliFriends) – with most of our contributions coming from money raised at the first fundraiser, nearly 2 ½ years ago. This goes to show the length of time it takes to organise and bring to fruition a capital build project here in Uganda.
Let us guide you now out of the maternity ward along the shiny new walkway which takes labouring mothers undercover to theatre without the threat of rain or low flying bats.
The completion of the walkway marks the end of our constructive association with the Rotary Club’s funding. Thanks to you, your phenomenal support and response to our appeals, our ongoing plan is provide decent facilities that are good enough to ensure the retention and care for the hospital staff. The devotion and dedication that these good people show towards the hospital, the patients and the community is the sole reason why the hospital continues to thrive.
Today, Dr Andrew (the Medical Superintendent) and Sister Immaculate (the Matron) took us on a tour around the construction site of the new nurses’ accommodation and visitors’ guesthouse. Phillip was all over it! Work is well underway and according to the builders they should be finished by late spring 2015… read late summer on Africa time! These buildings will provide accommodation for both senior and junior nurses, with 10 new homes being constructed. We voiced some concerns about the visitors’ accommodation and its position, and our aim ultimately will be to renovate and extend the old rotary house which we currently stay in; this would leave the new visitors block to provide further nursing accommodation. The renovation of the rotary house is not the priority. But having spent the day working on both the surgical and medical wards, these must become our next priority.
Another plan we are discussing is the purchase of an ambulance. Its main purpose is to bring expectant mothers in obstructed labour to hospital quickly and safely. They currently take a ‘boda boda’, a motorcycle, which often uses dangerous and rough roads. During this visit we have visited some of the peripheral clinics and have been struck by their total isolation from the expertise available at Kamuli Mission Hospital. This ambulance would improve access to the hospital and reduce the risk of complications from obstructed labour.
Kamuli never fails to bring in varied and interesting medical, surgical and maternity cases for visiting clinicians to get their teeth into – this trip was no exception. There are three teenagers on the medical ward suffering from tetanus… none of them were vaccinated against it. This is entirely preventable had they been vaccinated, at such a tiny cost.
We have also been managing a young boy who got his hand caught in a sugar cane grinder… another one! We had to amputate his index finger but have managed to save the rest of his hand.
Thanks again for your continued support and please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any ideas, suggestions or comments.