Sri Lanka

Update from the Field

October 31, 2007

Dr. Martina Fuchs

An Emergency Care Unit has opened at Tangalle Hospital on October 17, 2007, and is served by 10 trained Nursing Officers. It is now possible to resuscitate trauma victims immediately. This already had and will have a major impact on the trauma management as well as the management of medical emergencies at the hospital. The next step now will be the implementation of an Intensive Care Unit. Nursing Officers and supporting staff are trained and ready to go. Medical Consultants are interviewed. This will further increase the kind and amount of surgeries possible. The autoclave is now operated and maintained by a total of 12 Nursing Officers (2 more Nursing Officers were added since our last report). The equipment is run according to the needs of the entire hospital, up to 6 runs per day. One additional Medical Officer has been hired (55 compared to 54 at the time of our last report). The number of Anesthesiologists is now 4 (up from 2). There are 2 Visiting Physicians, 2 Gynecologists, 1 Pediatrician, 1 Surgeon. The total number of Nursing Officers has increased as well (97 compared to 83 at the time of our last report). One helper (person, who attends to cleaning, supporting the other staff and depositing of trash) attends to the Operating Theatre. This has made a very big impact on the day-to-day running of the theatre. In addition, Nick Buckingham personally took on the responsibility to guarantee the cleanliness of the wards and the whole hospital. There are 10 persons as well as one Health Supervisor in charge of keeping the hospital clean.

For the month of July 2007, OPD attendance was 12,079 – about 390 patients/day; 40/day more than at the time of our last reporting period. The number of admissions to the wards from July through September 2007 was 6,015. For the months of July through September 2007, about 585 patients have been treated at Tangalle Hospital per day.

The completion of the UNICEF building (Maternity, Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Gynecology Surgery, (Premature)/ Newborn Care Unit) is expected for the beginning of 2008. Consultant Pediatrician Dr. Deepal Perera will start a Special Care Baby Unit in November 2007. Nursing Officers for this unit have been trained at the Base Hospital in Matara.

Success stories:
 Dr. Chamal: "In the month of August, a patient was admitted with gun shot injuries. There was a penetrating wound going through the stomach. We performed a laparotomy. I assisted my Superior Consultant Surgeon Dr. Karunaratne. We encountered a heavy blood clot inside the abdomen and laceration of the liver and the spleen. We did a splenectomy and saved the life of this person." Dr. Karunaratne: "Up until today, all patients went home without any infections. This is solely due to the sterile equipment and the sterile dressings that were made available to us thanks to the autoclave provided by DRI. The number of surgeries carried out in the months of July, August and September 2007 will speak for itself."

Wish list: 
Dr. Karunaratne: "Presently, there is adequate equipment for the ICU. On our wish list are an ACCOMA 9000 series anesthetic ventilator for the second operating room, 3 multimode monitors for the ER, and 3 defibrillators for the ER and the wards." Dr. Perera: "An infant ventilator and 2 incubators for our new Special Care Baby Unit would be fantastic." 

Related Files:

Surgical and Clinical Data Tangalle Hospital October 2007
Tangalle Hospital Sterilizer Progress Report October 2007
High Pressure Sterilizer October 2007
RMF Tangalle Hospital Report October 2007
RMF Tangalle Hospital Wards Report October 2007

Country Page: Sri Lanka Initiative Page: Tangalle Hospital Rehabilitation Project