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.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Our heavy/large equipment, which was shipped in August, has finally entered the country last night in the belly of our plane, but is still in the process of clearing customs. We need that equipment to proceed with our planned surgeries. We are hopeful the shipment will arrive by 5pm today. It will be a late night unpacking that shipment. We are all scurrying about reorganizing the pediatric cardiac ICU (4 beds) and stepdown unit (4 beds). Much of our organization system from previous missions remains intact. The OR team is unable to enter the OR now due to an adult esophageal surgery that is underway. We expect that operation to end soon and the OR to be transformed into a Pediatric Cardiac OR. Drs. Lwabi, Dorostkar, and I will begin the final screening of patients now. We have narrowed the potential pool to 12 to fill the 10 planned surgeries. Patients vary in age from 11 months to 14 years. Our new team members are quickly orienting to their new environment though jet lag is present in all.
We are still planning on having our joint cardiac surgery case conference this afternoon to review the patients. There's a lot to fit in today.