Kitgum Town

Kitgum Town
Kitgum Town

Friday, October 16, 2015

Yotkom Medical Centre. Birth Day. October 12. 2015

Photos of our birth day and first week of treating and admitting patients at Yotkom Medical Centre.
The realisation of a long term vision and. Culmination of years of Hard work and perseverance by a  dedicated team of. People here in Uganda and in Australia,
Many of us found it difficult to contain our excitement and joy !

I believe we have the best team of health professionals in Uganda 

With so much potential!

We are committed to our mission statement :
Improving access and excellence in Primary a Health care in Northern Uganda.
Building relationships, resources and self reliance.
Please partner with us.
Yotkom Medical Centre is an oasis of hope and healing in Northern Uganda 

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Yotkom medical team teaching and orientation day

Dr Andrew Wright and Dr Ben Warlow from Australia joined with the Yotkom Medical Centre team for a day of getting to know each other,  enjoying some medical education and gaining  more understanding of the Yotkom vision and values.
Our team consists of a supervising Doctor, two clinical officers, four nurses, two nurse assistants, two administrative officers, two laboratory technicians, an x Ray technician, as well as our chaplain, counsellor and other support staff.
We are prepared for day one on Monday !
We know this is the beginning of a medical centre of excellence for Kitgum Uganda

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The team at Yotkom Medical Centre will see our first patients on October 12 th 2015

It is so exciting to anticipate the opening of our medical centre in less than a week !
This Saturday, Two days before we open our doors , our medical and support staff team of 20 will gather together for a full day of orientation, building relationships and sharing the vision and values of the Yotkom leadership.
Landscaping and planting of our garden have commenced.
Solar System with over twenty panels and an intelligent inverter along with generator back up are ensuring a reliable energy source.
This means we can set up a computer network to allow clinicians to document patient consultations and also access up to date on line medical information on drugs and the latest therapeutic approaches to common conditions,

Our X-ray technician, Julius , has successfully set up the machine and taken good quality film.
8 solar batteries safely locked away within the building 

The main computer server station in the administrators office.
Access to quickbooks online for account keeping and sales receipts .

Clinical officers are proudly setting up their work space with desk chairs , examination couch and easy access to sinks for hand washing. Effective LED lighting will provide good night time consulting spaces.

The new pharmacy , dispensary had been fitted out with cupboards and shelves remodelled from our previous premises.

Thankyou to all who have helped us come to this point.
Your ongoing assistance will make it possible to stock our pharmacy with drugs and our emergency room with dressings and instruments for wound repair , fracture treatment and surgery.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Helping to train medical workers for South Sudan

Yotkom medical centre in Kitgum is going to be a centre of excellence  where Clinical officers undertaking their medical training can be posted for supervision.
In March 2016  the first group of students in their third year of studies will come to work alongside our experienced doctors, nurses, laboratory technicians and  x Ray technicians in the new Yotkom medical facility.
They will have an opportunity to learn best practices and get invaluable experience to help them provide good care to the communities of South Sudan.
This week, the head of the training school,  paediatrician Dr Aniel Cherian came to visit , meeting our team and inspecting the nearly completed medical centre,

We are excited about having a role in education and being able to influence these future young  Doctors who will treat patients in Uganda and Sudan.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Considering the future of health provision in Kitgum

Part of the vision of Yotkom Uganda is to assist gifted and promising young students from this community to gain the education and experience they require to be high quality health professionals of the future.

This young man, Fred , is in senior school and has expressed an interest in future medical studies. Our Ugandan Yotkom doctors , Richard and Peter have agreed to mentor him and monitor his progress with a view to possible future sponsorship.
It is so important that we invest in the future medical work force for this community where the population is growing rapidly and the needs are great.
If you would like to help and equip people like Fred please donate to our Yotkom Uganda project.

Evaluating pain management protocols

Dr Ben Warlow is a young Australian Doctor who has a desire to help the poor in Northern Uganda.
In his own words, he has a white skin, but a black Acholi heart.
He feels a strong connection to the community here.
Three years ago he came to Kitgum Uganda and the relationships and friendships he formed here have left a lasting impression and a desire to return.
Ben is working to collect information on the use of pain relief in resource poor settings, particularly for procedures like fracture reductions, burns and wound dressings.

He has made connections with health workers in Yotkom, the Bregma clinic, Givernment Hospital and St Joseph's  Hospital. He is observing procedures and noting effectiveness and side effects of various approaches as well as considering cost issues.

At the end of his four weeks here, he will be making recommendations to Yotkom for implementing best practices in our new medical centre due to open in October.
We trust these  clinical guidelines will assist our doctors and nurses to provide appropriate pain relief for the patients attending our clinic.
Thanks Ben for your sacrifice and commitment to be here.
You have earnt your local nickname of "Oteka" : The great one !
And you are also a friend. (Omera) to many !

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Finishing touches to Yotkom medical centre

Synthetic fascia and guttering to avoid the rust problem
Smoothing off defects in the walk plaster ready for painting 
Wall tiles selected for wet areas 
Floor tiles in toilets 
Sinks in each room will encourage hygiene and hand washing 

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Moving on at rapid speed

We are making very good progress. The building is full of busy bees working in plastering, plumbing, electrical and metalwork. 

Digging a deep hole to absorb lightning shocks  transmitted from conductors on the roof. There are a lot if electrical storms here on the equator 

It's a big task cooking for a bunch of hungry building contractors 

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Providing employment to local businesses

The unemployment rate in northern Uganda is over 50%
Our medical construction has a spin off benefit to the local Kitgum community by providing employment to many local businesses.
Our windows and doors are being fabricated in a local workshop by an energetic team who are taking pride in their work 

Friday, August 7, 2015

Proud of our dedicated team saving lives

On our busy morning round of admitted patients we had to climb over people sleeping on the floors and carers with bowls of food prepared for the sick. The place is buzzing .
We examined a young child admitted the night before with severe life threatening malaria , convulsions and high fever and it struck me the difference these young clinical officers are making to children and families here. Without access to life saving intravenous medications offered in our medical centre , these little children would certainly die.
Later in the day , I asked Nancy, one of  the young medical officers here  what had motivated her to go through all the struggles necessary to study medicine . She told me she had been moved by what she had witnessed of sickness and suffering as she grew up in  rural Uganda and  decided  she wanted to be an instrument used by God to save lives
 . It was good to be able to encourage her and reflect  on the little children on our ward round this morning that she had diagnosed, treated and cured.
It is a real privilege to be here working alongside these dedicated compassionate people.
Thanks to all those in Australia who support our project. You are making a difference to so many people in need here through your generosity.

Laboratory technician taking blood sample for malaria testing 

Rendering of New Yotkom Medical clinic exterior walls 
Please consider helping us reach our target to complete the building project by giving a tax deductible donation.  This can de done by following the guide on the right hand side of this web page or go to:
We are striving to see the building open by October .

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The building progresses

Rear of the building showing site for septic tank being dug 
Digging and constructing by hand a large septic tank

Sifting sand for impurities

Andrew with assistant project manager William, inspecting internal wall rendering 
Walls with plumbing and electrical conduits prior to rendering 
Mesh and concrete ceilings in hallway showing skylights

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Malaria epidemic in Northern Uganda

Clinical officers Nancy, Peter and Richard 
The clinical officers working at Yotkom Bregma Medical Centre are being challenged by the number of cases of acute Malaria arising in the community. Many are seriously ill, especially the children. They require admission to our facility for intravenous medications.
The nearby Government hospital is overwhelmed with cases, housing over four hundred children in the small children's ward. There were five children who died of malaria last week.
Our team are dedicated to serving the community. We have some good clinical guidelines in place and charting of fluids and drugs is now part of the nursing routine for patients staying over in the wards.

We have developed a Clinical Guidelines manual to be used as a helpful reference for all the medical staff when treating common conditions . This ensures a consistent approach to treatment of diseases and is also a reflection of the latest international recommendations,

Yotkom is focussed on continuing education for our health workers and we encourage attendance at training seminars. Our chaplain Concy is going to be sponsored to attend a country wide pastors and counsellors conference in Kampala this month.