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.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Samaritan's Purse leadership visits UNC Project-Uganda

Mr. Kenny Isaacs, VP for Projects at Samaritan's Purse, visited UNC Project-Uganda today. He was accompanied by Associate Director for Projects, Mr. Edward Bensham and Ugandan Country Director, Mr. Chris Blacham. We have worked very closely over the past three years with Ugandan's Doreka Shemsande, Children's Heart Program Project Manager and Samantha Nuwagaba, Children's Heart Program Coordinator (both pictured above). Ms. Cindy Bonsal, based in Boone NC, heads the Children's Heart Program. Her leadership and support has made this program possible.

Samaritan's Purse is a Christian humanitarian aid organization based in Boone, NC with an extremely successful Children's Heart Program. They have arranged for the correction of hundreds of children with heart disease by partnering with U.S. physicians and hospitals. This past spring, six Ugandan children were brought to the U.S. for repair of their defects as part of a larger program co- sponsored by the Gift of Life.

Patrick Kahuma (pictured above), was brought to UNC-Chapel Hill where he underwent a successful balloon valvuloplasty of his pulmonary stenosis and ASD closure with an Amplatzer device. These minimally invasive procedures were performed in the pediatric cardiac catheterization laboratory by Dr. Elman Franz with anesthesia by Dr. Peggy Dietrich.

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