Anaesthesia providers in Uganda lack access to almost everything that we take for granted in developed world practice: basic drugs, monitoring equipment, support staff, continuous learning. And every week they treat a nightmare caseload: ruptured uteruses, road traffic accidents, severe burns. Ambulances bump across 60 kilometers of potholed road, stiff blankets and stretchers are carried on foot across the mountains, patients stumble in on foot, requiring urgent surgical attention at all hours.
There are only about 300 anaesthetic officers in the entire country, treating a population of more than 31 million. Lifebox has been working with the Ugandan Society of Anaesthesia (USoA) to support their activities.
In June and July of this year we spent two weeks at the Mbarara University of Science and Technology in southern Uganda, running training in pulse oximetry, the WHO Surgical Safety Checklist, and obstetric anaesthesia.
Thanks to your generosity we were able to donate 80 Lifebox pulse oximeters to the USoA. These were presented to anaesthetic officers from facilities that lack access to even a single pulse oximeter.
Over the next few weeks we’ll share their stories with you.