About UNC Project-Uganda
In 2004, a group of UNC physicians established the Amal Murarka International Pediatric Health Foundation in memory of their colleague, Dr. Amal Murarka, who died unexpectedly in 2003. The foundation sent a medical team to Kampala to establish the country's first pediatric intensive care unit at Mulago Hospital, Makerere University, where Dr. Murarka had previously conducted research. Subsequent work in 2007 and 2008 focused on pediatric cardiac surgery. The foundation not only built a cardiac ICU, but also performed a total of 21 life-saving pediatric cardiac surgeries.
In 2008 the foundation partnered with the Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases to establish UNC Project-Uganda.
MissionThe UNC Project-Uganda was established to support sustainable delivery of compassionate and competent health care to infants, children, and adolescents in Uganda; to improve the medical knowledge of the Ugandan health care workforce through in-country training and a physician exchange program; and to provide advanced medical equipment, medications, and services necessary for the delivery of compassionate and competent pediatric care in Uganda.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Sorry for the delay in getting our first post up since our arrival on Sunday evening. We were extremely busy getting set up and it took us time to find internet access.
It was a long 2 day flight, though fairly tolerable. No delays and at each leg we picked up team members until we arrived with 18 of us at Entebbe Airport. Samaritans Purse had a bus ready for the CNMC team and all of our last minute equipment that couldn't be shipped ahead of time (10 boxes at 50 lbs each). We chose to spend the evening near the airport and drive into the city early the next day. Traffic was like Los Angeles.
We were greeted at the Mulago Guest House (Health Volunteers Overseas) by our old friend Josephine and we were pleasantly suprised to see the new building had opened and it was quite nice. We finally met in person Dr Yvonne Voucher, a neonatologist from San Diego and Head of the Pediatric Programs for HVO. She has two other team member with her. We'll talk later about the support we brought for the neonatal program.... Our first day was frantic filled with unpacking and organizing the Cardiac Operating rooms and Pediatric Cardiac ICU. Fortunately we had alot of help. We transformed both of those areas during the day...still more work to be done before our first non bypass case tomorrow followed by our first intracardiac repair on cardiopulmonary bypass set for Wednesday. MORE on that soon...
Dr Sable and Dr Lacey were busy with the final screening of 12 patients to choose 10 from. We have met so many friends, old and new. We will share stories about each later. The entire hospital complex is buzzing with news of our arrival and dissemination of our plans to establish a pediatric cardiac surgical program this next two weeks. All are so friendly and extremely grateful for this mission which is now coming to fruition. Dr Sable returns to Uganda for his 6th trip and this was his original promise and goal...We're certain he is very excited and proud of this day.