Last Updated on: 26th July 2023, 05:03 pm
Lango I Health Minister, Dr Jane Ruth Aceng Ocero last week hosted the Association of Surgeons of Uganda in Lira City ahead of Surgical and Registrars Symposium Camps in September.
The Association of Surgeons of Uganda (ASOU) is a body that brings together over 400 qualified surgeons and those in training to advance surgical healthcare in Uganda.
Over the past 25 years, ASOU has conducted numerous surgical camps with the aim of reducing the burden of surgical diseases among the population in a selected region.
The health camps benefited those who would otherwise have limited access to surgery with a core aim of changing the lives of the people in the community.
Some of the beneficiaries have since lived a full and productive life and for some, their dignity is restored.
In 2022, ASOU conducted a surgical camp in Bukedi region, before Covid-19 in the Bunyoro region and Kigezi in 2018.
This time, Lango sub-region, covering an area of 15,570.7km and consisting of the districts of Alebtong, Amolatar, Apac, Dokolo; Kole, Lira, Oyam, Otuke and Kwania, Lira, Apac Municipality, including Lira city, will see hundreds, if not thousands of the estimated 2.5 million people benefiting.
Minister Aceng who also doubles as the Woman MP for Lira City, has confirmed that ASOU, in partnership with Lango Parliamentary Group and the Ministry of Health will now hold the September 2023 surgical camp in Lango sub-region.
The camps will be held from September 10 to 14.
“The surgical camp will host about 150 surgeons from the different parts of Uganda who will carry out minor surgeries and diagnoses to patients,” Dr Aceng added.
Aceng also called upon people with complicated conditions to turn up for assistance since no fee is required from them.
Lira Regional Referral Hospital, at least 6 hospitals and 10 Health Centre IVs is where surgery will be conducted including; Amai Community Hospital in Amolatar district, Dokolo Health Centre IV in Dokolo district, Orum Health Centre IV in Otuke district, Ogur Health Centre IV in Lira district, and Aboke Health Centre IV in Kole district.
Others are Anyeke Health Centre IV in Oyam district, Aduku Health Centre IV in Kwania district, Apac General Hospital in Apac district, Lira Regional Referral Hospital in Lira City, plus Lira University Teaching Hospital in Lira City West.
Frank Asiimwe, the president of ASOU said that the health centers were selected during their pre-surgical camp visits from June 5 to 9 2023.
He said screening of patients for surgery will be conducted by a team of clinicians within the health facilities starting a month before the start date of the camp activities.
According to Asiimwe, the pre-surgical camp visit undertook a survey on equipment at the health facilities and among the checklist were operating lights, operating tables, number of operating sets, monitoring equipment, recovery area, anaesthetic machines, gasses and drugs; infection control prevention measures and sterilization equipment and turnaround time.
“The surgical team will comprise at least Ugandan surgeons, anesthesiologists, anaesthetists, nurses and social workers from all over the country,” Asiimwe added.
He, however, said that some health centres did not qualify and were not suitable to partner with during the Lango surgical camp.
“Some health facilities have potholes in the theatres, have no facility for anaesthesia, no electricity, have broken theatre windows, the facility has been abandoned, the staff is uninterested among others so, they don’t meet the requirements,” said Asiimwe.
Woman MP of Kole district also the chairperson of Lango Parliamentary Group, Judith Alyek told TND News she was calling upon the community of Lango to embrace surgical services during the September’s surgical camp courtesy of ASOU.
“Last year in September, Lango sub-region got the mantle through the Health Minister, Aceng to host ASOU with an aim of extending surgical services to the Lango sub-region,” said Alyek.
Alyek further said that the one-week surgical camp has come at the right time when a portion of the Lango population needs these services, saying access to health services in the region has been limited due to the distance.
“Your coming in the region to provide surgical services is highly welcomed since some of the health facilities don’t provide such services and yet we have a lot of surgical needs from the communities,” LPG’s chair added.