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.
Saturday, April 16, 2011
What is a librarian doing on this trip? Indeed, #whatalibrariandoes is a mystery to many. Besides finding internet solutions, my role on this trip involves 3 things: technology, education and training. I'm investigating 1) what would be needed to establish regular, online trainings session for the Mulago pediatrics department, 2) if it's possible to link into current telemedicine efforts to share cases and consult with patients across land and sea by asking lots of questions about how telemedicine and tele-education happens here at the Mulago Hospital, and 3) conducting trainings on HINARI and PubMed. I'm also meeting with librarians at the Albert Cook Medical Library, the Infectious Disease Institute Library and the Makerere University Library. Three different foci, three different clientele groups and three radically different environments. I've also been taking every opportunity to talk at length about my new favorite subject: using web 2.0 to improve health.
These are things I never expected to do as a librarian, but I'm so glad I have the opportunity now. The tasks I have before me for this week and next are far from my days manning the reference desk at the public health library at the School of Information at the University of Michigan. My few short days here have led to conversations that show me, more than ever, how important information and public health are in this country. I know this trip will make me a better librarian and an even better public health educator.
Global Public Health Librarian at the Health Sciences Library
So, why should librarians be a part of global health teams?
A: Tech support
B: You'll need someone on the team to crack jokes after working all day in Peds Acute and Surgery
C: Librarians know things and know how to find things - invaluable in another country and culture.
D: A #hashtag means what?
E: All of the above