Murchison Falls Game Park Outreach Report
OUTREACH SUMMATIVE REPORT
Within Murchison falls national game park lies many unimaginable isolated communities deeply burdened by the limited access to comprehensive, accessible, and acceptable health care services. A team of health workers from Clarke international university, inter-national medical foundation, Apar Foundation, in partnership with wild frontiers, embarked on a journey to deliver primary health care services to these remote areas of Northern Uganda. Our basic goal was to provide basic medical care and preventive care to the people living in these areas.
At 9 am Wednesday 18th March 2020, the team set off from Kampala, Central Uganda, and was received at 6 pm by wild frontiers in Murchison park, at Baker’s lodge. The team freshened up, had supper, and rested ready to kick start the clinic the next day.
The medical team helped with everything from setting up tents, rearranging, and cleaning of seats to actual clinical work.
The clinic was hosted by a resident health center II, the only one within a radius of 20km which is headed by a medical clinical officer. It also acted as our referral point for patients instilled in long term care plans.
CLINICAL REPORT SUMMARY
A total of 517 patients were seen, 76,264 and 177 on day 1, day 2, and day 3 respectively.
Of these, 195 (37.7%) were male and 322 (62.3%) were female. Once again it shows that men still lag behind in seeking health care services. The team tried to address this by requesting women to bring their husbands for checkups and health education.
Community residents of 6-40 years dominated the clinic attendance with a 55.1% percentage attendance, followed by infants and toddlers (1-5years) who all together made a 17 percent attendance, >40 years– 14.3%, and finally, babies (0-12 months) made 13.5%. More than half of the children that attended the clinic were school going. And more than three-quarters of the adults were farmers.
64.2% of the cases were communicable diseases and only 35.8% being non-communicable. It was noticed that much of these communicable diseases were preventable diseases and therefore as part of our plan, we added one clinician to the public health team to increase on the efforts to alleviate ignorance, empower patients with up to date information, practically show how the common diseases they were suffering from could be prevented in the first place. Further, all clinicians gave a one on one diagnosis-based health talk. These were all efforts to mitigate the disease burden by its roots because the community cannot afford to use a curative strategy given the weak health system and remoteness of the area. There was a notable number of zoonotic diseases. Diseases that contributed to
the non– communicable toll were mainly chronic in nature with hypertension, diabetes arthritis (different forms) topping the list. There were also notable concerns with ophthalmology, a health specialty that was not being offered by the closest health center.
Seven mothers were pregnant and instilled in antenatal care. They were given mama kits and given a comprehensive talk about safer pregnancy. More kits were donated to the resident clinic by Apar foundation to be given out on Tuesday in the ANC clinic.
- Patients don’t know about family planning and have the wrong attitude about it
- Malaria is severe in its raw form like as if these people know nothing about malaria preventive strategies
- Lack of a community-centered health strategy
- Increased desire to know HIV status
COVID-19 PANDEMIC WORKSHOP
At the start of the project, we had no idea we would conduct a workshop on COVID-19, this came in as a need we had to address on the ground, with its effect being large on the park’s staff, the anxiety together with other mental health-related conditions arising from its insurgence couldn't be left un-tackled. Just hours after dropping reaching, the president had given a directive to close all schools by Friday,
It started as an awareness campaign for the students in the nearby school before they went home, later there was a need to teach Murchison falls park’s staff on ways to mitigate the transmission of the virus with each day receiving staffs from different lodges.
We conducted a total of 6 sessions, 2 sessions each day at 10 am and 3 pm to cater for the different shifts
- Successful treatment of 517 patients and 6 corona workshops reaching out to more than 50 staff of lodges.
- Supply of reusable and single-use sanitary pads.
- Supply of bread to the school students.
- Health education of patients.
Apar Foundation: This provided bread, drugs, pads, among others.
International Medical Foundation: This provided to the camp, drugs and health workers
Wild frontiers: Host
Clarke International University: The university provided a lot including human resources; Medical Clinical officers, Nurses, Public health specialists, medical laboratory technologists.
The following challenges where faced and solutions were raised to solve them; -
- Understocking of drugs
- Covid-19 pandemic altering our estimated days of service.
- Lack of better shade for patients.
- Patients coming from a long distance to seek health services.
- Little community volunteers/ community not so involved.
- No record-keeping strategy instilled prior