Kenya: Lodwar Clinic and Turkana Drought Relief and Mobile Medical Outreach Project
Lodwar Clinic, Turkana, Q3 2014 Report
January 26, 2015
Derrick Lowoto and Jonathan White
Summary of Activities
During Q3 2014, 3,859 patients were treated in the medical outreach clinics and 2,800 patients at the Lodwar Clinic. Outreach clinics, home visits, referrals, public health teachings were conducted. Additional medicine, maintenance on the mobile clinic, and staff salaries were paid. The program also met the costs of medical fees for some patients whom we referred for treatment to other health facilities.
Clinic & Outreach
This quarter we treated a total of 6,659 patients both in the Lodwar Clinic and villages.
A total of 40 outreach clinics were conducted in the rural villages.
12 home visits were made in rural villages and around Lodwar Town to patients not able to come to the clinic.
After responding to a September 7th, 2009 NY Times article by Jeffrey Gettleman, which highlighted the life threatening impact of the drought in Northern Kenya, Real Medicine Foundation coordinated a supply chain for water and food aid, and medical support to the region. We were able to provide a 4-week supply of food and water to 4,500 persons in severely drought affected regions of Turkana, Kenya where it had not rained in 4 years.
- Provide Medicines and Medical supplies to meet the needs of the targeted population
- Increase Mobile/Outreach Clinics in the remote villages
- Provide Medical Services at the Health Facility in Lodwar Town:
- Supporting the physical/medical needs of the targeted population
- Home visiting
- Referrals of patients needing advanced care to tertiary care hospital, and HIV and TB government clinics
- Teaching about and providing nutritious food
It was on a hot afternoon while conducting a medical outreach clinic in Nakoriongora Village that a middle-aged man arrived, sweating profusely after a long run. He spoke to the health team and explained that his wife was severely sick and needed help immediately. He had run ten kilometres to the site where we had the medical outreach clinic. Without hesitation we took the necessary medication and part of the team went to rescue the patient.
We found the patient (Mrs. Aleper) aged 25 years old and her baby lying down in the hot sun. Her husband had left her under the sun with the baby after struggling to take her under the shade but unable since he was also sick with malaria. It was a very emotional experience for the health team, one member of the team narrated how she found herself tearful after seeing the situation of the patient under the hot sun with her baby. The patient was moved to the shade and given medication and water with difficulty. After the initial medication, the patient was taken to Lodwar Hospital for further treatment where she was diagnosed with severe malaria and amoebiasis. She was treated immediately and discharged four days later in much better condition.
Young Patient Needs Advanced Care
During the month of August, a female child aged 5 years old was brought by her father to our Lodwar Clinic. After taking her history and a physical examination, the child was found to have a complication that needed proper investigation to ascertain the actual problem. Her parents have been in Lodwar District Hospital several times but with no benefit over her condition. From her previous records and our clinical assessment she is likely to have cardiac-related problems or blood vessels obstructing in the brain.
Somebody donated part of the money to facilitate her referral to a tertiary hospital though more money may be needed. The parents of the girl are poor and are not in a position to meet the cost. Her father told us that they had had twenty goats but the drought that is currently being experienced in Turkanaland has killed them all. We will be keeping an eye on the situation and update as we hear more.