Uganda: Panyadoli Healthcare Project
RMF Founder and CEO Dr. Martina Fuchs Visits Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement: Q2 2017
September 13, 2017
Summary of Activities
During this reporting period:
- RMF procured and delivered sufficient medications and medical supplies to the Panyadoli Health Centres. These were delivered on time throughout the reporting quarter.
- RMF procured and delivered sufficient cleaning supplies, which enabled the team to keep the health centers clean and neat.
- Continuous medical education (CMEs) were fully carried out during the quarter, so that team members keep sharing and increasing their knowledge.
- All patients that came to the health facilities received treatment, and those whose conditions were beyond the capacity of the health facilities were referred accordingly.
- Integrated services that benefit both refugees and the host community were continuously provided. For example, RMF’s surgeon works certain days at the nearby district hospital.
- Construction of the Minor Operating Theatre and Maternity ward expansion, generously supported by LDS Charities, was completed, and the buildings were inaugurated.
- Continuous immunization of all under-5 children living in and around the settlement was implemented through the health facilities and outreach activities.
- Community health outreaches were conducted as planned, promoting preventive health and increasing disease surveillance.
- Medical screening of new refugees at Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement was effectively performed during the reporting period.
- Repair and maintenance of program equipment was promptly and effectively performed.
- Sufficient office supplies, such as stationery, were purchased to support the program.
- The health facility was maintained and cleaned, ensuring that the compound, wards, offices, common areas, and the entire facility are hygienic and conducive to healing and working.
- New staff members were recruited to replace those who left the team in the course of the reporting period. These included new midwives. .
- Promoted and enhanced teamwork through departmental and general meetings.
- Facilitated UNHCR and partners’ coordination meetings both in the settlement and regional offices, helping to promote cohesiveness in operations.
- Salaries, wages, and top-up allowances for all staff members were paid in a timely manner. This kept the team’s morale high.
Dr. Martina Fuchs
RMF Founder and CEO Visits
Every year, RMF Founder and CEO Dr. Martina Fuchs schedules a visit to our project sites in Uganda. It is a moment that RMF Uganda team members await with great eagerness. Among all the partners managing refugee operations in Uganda, only RMF’s CEO spares time annually to visit all projects, interact freely with team members, and share ideas on how to move RMF forward using a unique approach. During her visit, both professional and support staff have an opportunity to interact with the CEO. This is part of the paradigm shift that RMF represents.
The program is helping communities overcome ethnic prejudices that each group of people had against the other. This is because RMF employs workers from all different areas and tribes of the country. When people meet together, they learn to appreciate each other. Dinka and Nuer tribes may not like each while in South Sudan, but at the health centers in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement, they are able to meet and receive the same services. Thus, this program increases the chance for person-to-person interaction. Since the health and other services supported by RMF also cater to both the refugee and host community, peaceful coexistence has been strengthened on a larger scale as well.
The project has improved the economy, both directly and indirectly. Refugees that have been employed as cleaners at the health centers can now earn a salary, which has helped them improve their lives and the lives of their families. A local trading center has developed near Panyadoli Health Centre III, and other services, such as mobile money transfers, have extended near the facility. The project has also helped create a market for some local products, including food, fruit, and other goods. Because of these activities and the labor force the project has attracted, business in the nearby town of Bweyale have benefited and the town council’s tax base has widened (employees pay a local service tax).
Reliable Health Care
Through RMF/WCF’s support, Panyadoli Health Centre III has become a reliable source of healthcare services to the community. As a result, faith has been restored in the settlement’s health services and death rates have been reduced significantly both in the refugee and host communities. We have continued to maintain the reliability of care by recruiting additional staff members to meet the needs of large numbers of newly arriving South Sudanese refugees.
Mental Health Department
Growth and Progress
RMF’s new mental health department has progressed tremendously. Since January 2017, 1,876 patients requiring mental health support have visited the facility. 1,666 mental health clients have successfully been enrolled for care and 9 cases were referred to the Butabika National Referral Mental Hospital in Kampala.
In addition to providing quality healthcare services, Panyadoli Health Centre III has also become a source of knowledge. Since RMF has brought in a professional and experienced workforce, medical and social institutions are now sending students to complete their internships here. Therefore, the project is promoting learning and sharing of knowledge and skills.
The Panyadoli Health Centres, located in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement near Bweyale, Uganda, provide healthcare services to over 100,000 refugees from Kenya, South Sudan, DR Congo, Burundi, and Rwanda, as well as members of the host community.
- Provide medicine, medical supplies, and medical support
- Support the Health Management Information System Maintenance (staff and petrol supply)
- Maintain hygiene at clinic to Best Practice Western Medicine standards
- Enhance existing structures for Malnutrition ward and main center
- Provide cooking materials such as charcoal stoves, saucepans, utensils, etc.
- Upkeep and renovation of the health center through periodic re-painting and re-plastering.
Click to enlarge
Severe Acute Malnutrition
Patrick Mirinde is 1 year and 6 months old. He was diagnosed with SAM (severe acute malnutrition) thanks to RMF’s community outreach program, which spotted Patrick in the community and immediately referred him to Panyadoli Health Centre III, where he is being treated. Patrick was put on IV Cloxacillin 250 ml, 6 hours. He is being fed therapeutic foods, Plumpy Nut (RUTF: Ready-To-Use Therapeutic Food), etc. Patrick is gradually recovering, and he is regaining his appetite. The young boy’s mother is amazed to see Patrick regaining life, and she is grateful to RMF for the support and care that she and her son have received. The nutrition team is teaching Patrick’s mother techniques of how to locally mobilize and prepare nutritious foods for Patrick at home.
Peace Nabisawa is a 4-year-old boy from Cluster E in Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement. He was brought to the health facility when his family observed that he was not breathing. It was at night, and thankfully Peace’s mother had the RMF ambulance hotline. She called immediately and the ambulance was dispatched to pick up the child. When the health workers examined Peace, pneumonia was diagnosed. He was immediately put on IV Cefradine 400 mg, IV Hydrocortisone 25 mg, and Panadol syrup 2.5 ml. Pneumonia is a common cause of death in the settlement, mostly when it is not treated on time. Peace’s family thanks RMF for the rapid response that saved their son.
Lifesaving Malaria Treatment
John Nakuka is a 6-year-old boy who lives in Cluster K of Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement. He was brought to the health facility unconscious. According to his mother, John had been complaining that he felt cold for 3 days and had not been playing with peers. John’s mother had thought he would get well. It was evening when he convulsed and became unconscious, and that is when his mother rushed him to the health facility. The blood test showed +3 malaria parasites. IV Quinine was immediately administered, along with other recommended antimalarial treatment. John is gradually recovering and will soon be discharged.
When speaking with John’s mother about his history, we learned that the young boy was not sleeping under a mosquito net. Our medics have advised John’s mother to ensure that he always sleeps under a treated mosquito net. According to the doctor, if John had not been rushed to the health facility, he would have died in the next few hours because of the severe level of malaria in his body.