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.


The 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.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Just breathe. . .

In Uganda, the role of the Respiratory Therapist (RT) remains elusive. Despite 3 previous missions, we have not been able to establish a firm partnership between our RT's and their personnel. We have tried physical therapists, nurses, anesthesiologists, etc. Our work remains undone. Fortunately, Lupe Haynes (on her 3rd mission) and Sheila White (a newbie) have taken the task head on. They have provided expert respiratory support to these children from the moment they return from the OR following cardiopulmonary bypass. Miraculously, all children have been spontaneously breathing within minutes of arriving in the ICU (save 1..who was ventilated for about 2 hours). They have been teaching different levels of healthcare providers about basic and advanced respiratory support. Our results would not be what they are without their endless efforts.

(By the way, my favorite song, "Breathe," is on Anna Nalick's album "Wreck of the Day")


Sandi said...

Go RRTs! And keep breathin'.And...the PICU misses you @ home. blessings, Sandi

Anonymous said...

Great to see all the photos!!!! You all are doing a wonderful job!!! We miss you here at home.