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 Health  Uganda Project #20108

Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda

by Global Emergency Care Collaborative
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Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
Save Lives with Emergency Care in Uganda
ECPs evaluating a patient at the Masaka ED
ECPs evaluating a patient at the Masaka ED

One of the most important functions of front-line Emergency Care Practitioners and other emergency care providers is public health surveillance. With the novel coronavirus front and center on our minds these days, it is a good time to reflect on some of the lifesaving clinical and public health duties that emergency care providers complete every day. More often than not, emergency care providers across the globe are the first providers that see certain diseases. They are the first to see patterns of disease emerge in populations. In Uganda where several hemorrhagic fevers, like Ebola, are endemic, they are trained to recognize and diagnose patients with these deadly diseases, so they don't spread to the general public. This front-line surveillance is essential to stopping the spread of these deadly disease across the population. 

Training Emergency Care Practitioners to diagnose and treat acutely ill and injured patients is a horizontal intervention that cuts across many disease-based interventions, like HIV/AIDS, TB, and malaria, as well as a wide variety of other public health interventions, like infant and maternal mortality, injuries, road traffic accidents, poisonings, and water borne diseases. Because emergency care clinicians usually are the first to treats patients with a wide variety of diseases and injuries, the proliferation of specialty trained emergency care clinicians will not only provide essential public health surveillance, but also improve health outcomes for entire populations. Estimates suggest that in low-income countries, like Uganda, 54% of deaths could be prevented with access to emergency care.

Emergency Care Practitioners provide essential, lifesaving services in their communities, like:

  • Treating 30,000 emergency patients per year. This was half of all the emergency care provided across Uganda in 2018.
  • Each ECP treats over 40,000 patients during her/his career.
  • Public health surveillance – ECPs are the first line of defense against infectious disease outbreaks
  • Mortality decreased by 25% in patients treated by ECPs in rural Uganda

Emergency Medicine is a vast field, encompassing a knowledge base of essentially every other discipline in medicine and a wide array of procedural skills. Recognizing the huge physician shortage in Uganda and throughout Africa, GEC is training nurses and clinical officers to provide quality emergency care appropriate to the settings where they practice. Let us all be grateful for the essential surrveilance role that our dedicated emergency care clinicans play in protecting the public's health across the globe.

Patient evaluation by ECPs
Patient evaluation by ECPs
Patient Triage in the Emergency Department
Patient Triage in the Emergency Department
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ECP - Auma Winnie - in the Masaka ED
ECP - Auma Winnie - in the Masaka ED

A child born anywhere in the world has the right to grow up and have a productive life. Unfortunately, kids aren't able to do this in many places in the world because they don't have access to lifesaving emergency care, provided by specialty-trained Emergency Care Providers. At Global Emergency Care, we are working to change this. We train the available health workforce to provide that lifesaving emergency care in places where none exists. 

In fact, our recent research shows that for every $117 invested in our program, one child's life will be saved. This is incredibly compelling evidence for the importance of this program. Not to mention a very small sum of money to save a child's life. Our goal by December 31st is to raise $58,500 to save the lives of 500 children, and we need your help to get there!

Our ECPs save the life of 1 out of every 26 children they treat. Without this program, none of these children would have survived. Not only that, but it only costs $117 to save the life of one of these children. 

To put a name and face to the statistics is the following story about Precious. Precious was sick; too weak to hold her head up, too tired to cry as her father carried her into the emergency department. What follows is the story of how two of GEC's Emergency Care Practitioners, Deus and Teddy, saved Precious' life. Her story represents that of thousands of other children whose lives have been saved by ECPs. >>> Read more about Precious' precarious journey

Your support today makes our lifesaving work possible.

Mother & Daughter in Emergency Department
Mother & Daughter in Emergency Department
ECP - Kiire Teddy - working on a patient
ECP - Kiire Teddy - working on a patient

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Brad Dreifuss and Tom Neill representing GEC
Brad Dreifuss and Tom Neill representing GEC

The GEC team was honored to participate in Uganda's inaugural Emergency Medicine Conference from August 1st - 3rd, 2019 in Jinja, Uganda. This exciting step in the progression of emergency medicine development in Uganda was excellently organized by the Emergency Medicine Society of Uganda. 

GEC is proud to work alongside our many incredible partners to build Emergency Medicine in Uganda, which is why we were honored to sponsor the conference alongside with other partners, as well as participate in several session at the conference.

GEC's Masaka Program Coordinator - Rashidah Nambaziira - gave an excellent talk about interprofessional collaboration and the importance of setting clear goals and specific objectives, determining specific roles, clear communication and accountability, and effective utilization of skills and strengths. In addition, successful participatory engagements are created via mutual respect, sharing leadership and decision making, and inter-professional teams in collaboration. 

Dr Bradley Dreifuus, GEC's Director of Partnerships & Innovation, led an evocative discussion on compassion in healthcare and better patient outcomes. He highlighted the mechanism of action for compassion having beneficial effect on patient outcomes which were grouped into four categories: physiologic effects, psychological effects, enhanced patient care, and enhanced quality care. 

Tom Neill, GEC's Executive Director, presented the excellent work of the GEC Research Team in his talk about Emergency Care Research in Low and Middle Income Countries. He highlighted GEC's experience in building a reserach program as a quality assurance initiative to better understand how to provide improved care for patients and improved training for Emergenmcy Care Practitioners. 

Charles Ndyamwijuka, GEc Reserach Associate, did a great job presenting on the lessons learned from GEC's research program over the past decade, including the importance of local partnership, engaging local stakeholders, creating a shared vision and creating partnership with like-minded funders.

Overall, the conference was an overwhelming success for Uganda's nascent emergency medicine community and system development. We look forward to building on the strengths of today, to help strengthen the emergency medicine system in the coming years.

Rashidah Nambaziira on professional collaboration
Rashidah Nambaziira on professional collaboration
Dr. Brad Dreifuss on Compassion in Healthcare
Dr. Brad Dreifuss on Compassion in Healthcare
Tom Neill, ED, on Emergency Care Research in LMICs
Tom Neill, ED, on Emergency Care Research in LMICs
Conference located at headwaters of the Nile River
Conference located at headwaters of the Nile River
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Kiire Teddy, Emergency Care Practitioner
Kiire Teddy, Emergency Care Practitioner

Emergency Medicine is a vast field, encompassing a knowledge base of essentially every other discipline in medicine and a wide array of procedural skills; practitioners need to constantly stay up to date. This can be a daunting task and one that requires significant support to be achievable.

To support our graduates after they finish their two-year Emergency Care Practitioner training, we're launching the Continuing Education & Leadership (exCEL) Program

The exCEL Program will provide graduates with continuing medical education opportunities to review higher level content, learn new skills, and receive additional mentorship after they graduate. Once back at their home hospitals, we're working to set up visits to work with administration on integrating emergency care into their facilities and regular phone calls to support ECPs in their new environment. ExCEL will also enable ECPs to attend regional retreats and large scale conferences, take emergency care training courses, and access online resources.

Thirteen years ago this month I completed my training in emergency medicine. I remember my first few shifts working independently—each decision was filled with self doubt and trepidation. More than ever before, I acutely felt the weight of holding a patient's health and well being in my hands. I remember realizing then that to truly master the practice of medicine in general, but emergency medicine in particular, requires lifelong learning. 

As the continuing education infrastructure for emergency medicine in Africa is in its most nascent stages, we believe the exCEL Program will offer much needed to our ECPs to maintain skills and continually build new skills.

The effect of donations to this campaign are truly astronomical. The educational experiences we're providing the ECPs as they graduate and enter practice are building on the solid foundation we build over their two years of training. This helps them walk the path of lifelong learning and provide truly amazing care to those vulnerable patients they care for every day. 

We're so grateful to have you as a part of the GEC team.

Thank you!

Alfunsi and Winnie discussing a patient's x-ray
Alfunsi and Winnie discussing a patient's x-ray
Emergency Department at Masaka Hopital
Emergency Department at Masaka Hopital

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Elizabeth, ECP, outside the ED at Masaka
Elizabeth, ECP, outside the ED at Masaka

It’s hard to believe it’s almost April - 2019 is just flying by! Since spring is in the air, I thought it would be a great time to send you an update about GEC's programs and how your donations have been put to work.

In May, we will celebrate the graduation of the first Diploma class - 8 new ECPs who will work at five different hospitals across Uganda. At three of those hospitals, the ECP will be the first trained emergency care provider at that hospital site. This is very exciting because it means that thousands more Ugandans will now have access to emergency care delivered by a highly trained Emergency Care Practitioner.

This spring and summer GEC will be recruiting for the 3rd class of ECP Diploma students to begin training at Masaka in the fall semester. The new students will join the class of six 2nd year students. GEC continues to work with Mbarara University to facilitate the growth and delivery of the ECP Diploma program.

Last year, GEC sent 8 ECPs to be trained in the WHO’s 5-day Basic Emergency Care (BEC) course in Kampala. These ECPs all received the BEC training, as well as the training to become BEC trainers. In January, four of those ECPs – Cleophus, Richard, Baniga, and Benifer – put that training to use and held a BEC training at Nyakibale for 10 additional ECPs. After completion, all 18 GEC ECPs are now trained and are able to train additional Ugandan healthcare workers in WHO’s Basic Emergency Care course. This is one step in the larger mission of training the emergency care workforce and expanding access to high-quality, emergency care across Uganda.

In February, GEC’s research teams from each site met in Masaka and held the first-ever, two-day research summit. During the summit, GEC researchers learned how to analyze data, how to develop a research question, how to develop and give a data-based presentation, and, most importantly, the teams got to know each other better and fostered a solid sense of camaraderie.

Although we are only 3 months into 2019, GEC has had some amazing things happening this year, and none of it would be possible without the support of generous donors like you. Thank you for your continued belief in our work educating individuals, building systems, and saving lives.

 

Warm regards,

Tom Neill

Executive Director

P.S. If you know any physicians who would like to volunteer their time working with ECPs in Uganda, please contact us at volunteer@globalemergencycare.org

Dr. Alexa, GEC volunteer, teaching Ultrasound
Dr. Alexa, GEC volunteer, teaching Ultrasound
Winnie seeking mentorship from Alfunsi on an x-ray
Winnie seeking mentorship from Alfunsi on an x-ray

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Organization Information

Global Emergency Care Collaborative

Location: Oak Park, IL - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @globalemergcare
Project Leader:
Tom Neill
Oak Park, IL United States
$29,766 raised of $50,000 goal
 
341 donations
$20,234 to go
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