Thursday, June 5, 2014

Mukono Hospital

This afternoon, while the rest of the group visited the Luzira Prison, a group of six of us Drake students traveled to Mukono Hospital, a private Church of Uganda hospital, to visit with  administration and staff regarding the hospital's conditions and management. Despite the fact that our initial plans to meet with a Mukono Hospital doctor fell through, we were able to meet a hospital administrator, who answered our questions, and we were given a tour of the hospital and its facilities. While touring the hospital, it was interesting to see the various wards--for children, men, women, and pregnant mothers--have multiple beds separated from one another merely by curtains. Throughout the tour, we were able to communicate with other hospital staff, such as a laboratory technician and registered nurse. Mukono Hospital contained many hospital necessities, including a radiology room, dental office, operating room, ultrasound, and a laboratory for running tests (including HIV and malaria). According to the administrator, there are three doctors working in the hospital and one surgeon, seeing on average almost 80 patients and performing roughly five surgeries per day. It was an interesting experience seeing a hospital in Uganda that provided better care than I personally expected. The hospital was organized and clean, and the staff was knowledgeable and active. It was clear that providing healthcare to individuals was of utmost importance--particularly when the administrator said that they would care for patients even if the patient were unable to pay for the services. With hospitals like Mukono with a mission to provide quality healthcare to patients, a more sustainable healthcare system in Uganda can be possible if facilities and staff are improved to provide healthcare accessibility to all Ugandan citizens. 

Mukono Hospital.

The beds in the infant ward.

Beds in the maternity ward separated by curtains.

Operating room.

3 comments:

  1. Ali- I loved your pictures of the hospital!! I was really excited to visit the hospital, and like you, was surprised at how functioning the hospital was. I was really impressed by the laboratory they had at the hospital that quickly turned around blood work. Another thing I found interesting was how much the services cost at the hospital. An ambulance ride, for example, cost about 50,000 Ugandan shillings or $20 in the United States. Though this may seem extremely cheap for people in the USA, this is still quite expensive for people in Uganda who live on a dollar a day. I was also surprised at the number of doctors at the facility, only three. Do you think this is too few for the population this hospital serves or does this fit the needs of Mukono hospital? Finally, I was surprised at how much we were allowed to see in the hospital. Our tour guide would just open up the curtains to show us various patients- do you think this was weird or just a cultural difference?

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  2. The administrator, Jacent, did a great job of showing us the facilities and carefully answered all our questions. Hopefully we will get to see Dr. Dickson before we leave. The differences in levels of privacy are very interesting.

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    1. It was interesting to see the difference in privacy, but my main concern with the curtains being the only separation between patients is the possibility of the spread of infection. In the USA, patients are given their own rooms with nurses providing fresh linens, food, and drinks. They also monitor them throughout their stay at the hospital. A main purpose of separate rooms is to avoid the spread of infection between patients and provide an antiseptic environment--an aspect that concerns me regarding Mukono Hospital.

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