Thanks to everyone who came along to hear about Interface Uganda on Wednesday. It really was a great evening. We heard from Dom Hazell (physio) and Charlotte Hazell (dietician) about their experiences in Kagando and CoRSU hospitals last November. Dom explained how different it all is to working in the NHS, with Ken being the only physio at Kagando hospital and having to assess and treat every patient with whatever condition they present with. During his visit Dom saw patients with leprosy, strokes, back pain and even women’s health issues, amongst many others.
Charlotte gave a very different perspective to those we have heard before: being the first Interface funded dietician to visit Uganda. She explained how she had witnessed malnutrition in adults and children, saw children with rickets, and had discussed the complex issues of feeding babies and children with naso-gastric tubes (to provide essential nutrients when they cannot feed normally) with both parents and staff. The photos of babies born with cleft lips and palates, and the difference that the surgery makes were astounding. Charlotte is still in contact with the doctors at CoRSU hospital about these issues.
Vikram Devaraj (Consultant plastic and reconstructive surgeon at the RD&E) gave a fantastic account of his very recent trip to CoRSU hospital. As well as performing surgery on many complex cases, he did a huge amount of teaching to the Ugandan surgical trainees that Interface helps. There are 3 trainees at the moment, who are progressing well and will soon be equipped to do amazing work in Uganda, and change many lives there. He explained the importance of sustainability, and training the local Ugandan surgeons – brilliant work. It was great to hear about George Galliwango (the original trainee that Interface helped), who is now the head of reconstructive surgery at CoRSU hospital, and the recently qualified trainees – Martin and Darius – who are at Mbarara hospital, setting up the first plastic and reconstructive surgery unit there.
We also heard from Karen Devaraj (Interface Uganda’s administrator), about how Interface plans to use money donated : for equipment that the new trainees need, for equipment to set up the new department in Mbarara and for support for the physio departments in Kagando and CoRSU.
Jackie Fowler gave a brief account of how Interface Uganda raises money and fundraises for all the work that is carried out. She expressed special thanks to Dom for his fund raising efforts this year and those in the audience who had taken part in the wide variety of events already completed this year. She also mentioned that there are more events to come and if people would like to take part they should take a look at the website (soon to reformatted), and to ‘like’ our Facebook page.