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Tagged: Gesundheit

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On 24.01.2019 Project Aid The Gambia, Projekthilfe Gambia e.V. (Germany)  and Dr. Isatou Touray, Minister of Health *, signed a Memorandum of Understanding to improve health care in the rural Gambia.

1. Initial situation
The state health service in The Gambia is disastrous. The larger state run hospitals lack medicines and medical devices. The same applies to rural health centers spread across the country.

The rural health centers  are structurally and hygienically in a desolate condition. Very few have a supply of electricity and running water. Health centers connected to the electricity grid have a monthly budget for electricity (“cash power”) that is too small and often used up in the middle of the month. Nocturnal births take place in the light of flashlights or cell phones.

The lack of medicines means that patients need to buy their medicines for treatment in nearby private pharmacies at overpriced prices. These private pharmacies are operated by well-trained nurses who were formerly employed in the state health care system and are now lacking the state system.

Specialist doctors are missing throughout the country. For example, in Gambia there is only one diabetologist who can treat only a very small number of diabetics – and that only in the capital  area of Banjul and only with the help of an association in Germany.

Many rural nurses have left the civil service because the ministry can not provide them and their families with housing in or near the health centers.

Medical equipment donated from Germany and other European countries often does not last long, as there are no training ocapacities for technical personnel and / or lack of money for maintenance and repairs.

In 2011/2012, Project Aid The Gambia e.V., with funding from the German BMZ (Federal Ministry for Cooperation and Development), rebuilt the state run health centre in the village of Njaba Kunda as a model clinic and handed it over to the Gambian Ministry of Health.

In 2009/2010 Project Aid The Gambia e.V. carried out a structural survey of all 33 then existing rural health centers. Floor plan drawings and photos are available from that survey.

Through the project described below The Gambia could become a model region in Africa.

2. Project description

Buildings / Equipment

  • The health centers shall be renovated / renovated.
  • The hygienic conditions shall be improved: creation of a water supply, tiling of all premises etc.
  • In each chealth centre a small laboratory shall be set up
  • Housing for staff, not from the surrounding villages, should be created (new building)
  • Establishment of a central “Facility Management” team of local craftsmen who are responsible for maintenance / repairs of the buildings (planned: over a period of 10 years after initial   renovation or new construction

Energy and water supply

  • If possible, all rural health centers shall be equipped with an uninterruptible 24/7 (solar) power and water supply – by installing small PV systems including storage batteries.

Medical Equipment

  • Medical equipment (second-hand) for state hospitals shall be get hold of in Germany (donation or purchase) and be shipped to The Gambia
  • Training for technical personnel
  • Creating a facility for maintenance / repair of medical equipment locally in The Gambia

Drug supply

  • The existing system of free delivery of – non-existing medicines  – to patients shall be abolished. Patients shall in the future purchase prescribed drugs at the purchase price (wholesale prices) plus 10% surcharge. This has already been agreed in the present MOU.
  • From drug sales and patient treatment fees, new medicines can be purchased
  • The procurement of medicines incl. Logistics (delivery / storage) should be outsourced to local private wholesale pharmacies.
  • This would cut off the business basis of the small private pharmacies in the neighborhoods of the health centers. The owners  (nurses) would return to the state health service.

 

Health Centre App

Project Aid Thee Gambia is currently developing an App for smartphones, with which the operation of a health centers can be completed, including

  • Registration of patients
  • Revenue fees for medical treatment and laboratory services
  • Diagnosis / treatment inclunding medical guidelines for the treatment / medication of the most common diseases
  • Laboratory results
  • Issue / prescription of medication
  • Possibility of data transfer from  of symptoms / diseases to UN / WHO or other international organizations.

The app sends all data daily and automatically for evaluation to a central server (via Internet or SMS)

Information on the number of patients treated and diseases are available on the same day.
The accumulation of diseases in specific places / regions and possible incipient epidemics can be detected and combated at an early stage.
Information about the number of medicines issued is available on the same day and can be used for reordering / logistics.
In larger health stations, a small network (“intranet”) with server (PC, laptop) for data storage / forwarding must be set up. Prerequisite for this is an uninterruptible 24/7 power supply. This is guaranteed by the installed PV system(s) and storage batteries.

 

3. Status of the Project 

At the moment Project Aid The Gambia is awaiting information from the Gambian Ministry of Health about

  • Number / designation of the rural health centers to be renovated / renovated
  • structural condition of each health centre
  • Connection to the mains
  • staffing
  • Number of patients / year
  • Existing medical equipment in state hospitals
  • lack of medical equipment in state hospitals

Subsequently, the financing requirement can be determined, a cost calculation and a scheduling can be worked out. At present, partners are being sought for the implementation of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

* Update: On March 15th, 2019, the Minister of Health, Dr. Isatou Touray, was appointed as the Vice President. On March 27th, 2019, Dr. Ahmadou Lamin Samateh was appointed as the new Minister of Health.

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On November 8th, 2018, the new staff house was ceremoniously opened at the Health Center Buniadu of Riverboat Doctors International e.V. (RDI). In almost seven months of construction, also the kindergarten of the project was extended by one classroom and new water supply tabs for the community and for the local mosque were installed. “Today is a big day in the history of Buniadu,” said Ousman Camara of the Gambian Ministry of Health during the opening ceremony. “Running a health center is a good thing by itself, but providing staff quarters is really magnificent and worth recognizing.” The state health service had to let many employees go because no accommodations could be provided, Camara  continued.

The new staff house consists of a large common room and two rooms each for the two nurses of the Health Centre. A modern sanitary area with a shower is included and an African kitchen in the outdoor area. In the back of the building are two furnished rooms, a common area with kitchen corner and a bathroom for volunteers from Germany. All rooms of the house are tiled. Before staff and volunteers have lived in two very basic houses – one kilometer away from the Health Centre. Water had to be brought in with a donkey cart. The power of a small solar panel was sufficient only for the operation of a few incandescent lamps. The new staff housing is connected to the electricity and water supply of the Health Centre. The solar system of the Health Centre has been enlarged, new batteries installed.

The extension of the kindergarten by one additional classroom makes it possible to look after about 100 children now. At the same time, the three classrooms were equipped with used school furniture and boards – donated by various elementary schools in Germany. Also the playground of the kindergarten was renovated and expanded by a large nest swing.

On the outer wall of the staff house for the villagers four water supply points were installed, which are connected to the well of the Health Centre. The entrance area in front of the local mosque next to the Health Centre has been tiled and equipped with four water tabs and a tiled bench.

Construction works began in April 2018 and was organized by Project Aid The Gambia, the Gambian partner of Projekthilfe and RDI. Since the beginning of 2017 Project Aid The Gambia also manages the projects of RDI in The Gambia. For the construction, 5,000 concrete blocks were produced by hand on site and 220 square meters of tiles were laid.

The construction costs amounted to approx. 30,000 euros and were funded with donations Projekthilfe Gambia (staff house, solar batteries), Friedensdorf International (kindergarten), RDI and the German-Turkish Günes family (water points, mosque area, solar system), to name but a few.

A Gambian TV station, a radio station and several newspapers reported on the opening ceremony.

 

Video: Grand Opening of Staff House Buniadu (2018)

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DSC_0447-klein Upps – we are sorry. This post is only available in German ;-(

Video: Ankunft Schulmöbel in Jahaly (2018)

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20170730_MK-Mass-Haddy-mit-Kinderakten-01The cooperation between Project Aid The Gambia (International NGO A57)  and the Friedensdorf International (Peace Village) in Oberhausen/Germany will be continued. The two organizations recently confirmed this after a discussion. In October the next mission of Peace Village in The Gambia will take place. Sick and injured children, who can not be helped medically in The Gambia, are presented to the members of the team of Peace Village. The team then decides on the spot, which children  can be treated overseas in Germany. At the moment the management team at our project office in Manjai Kunda saves the medical reports and documents of the children who are on the waiting list for overseas treatment by Peace Village. In order to improve the medical preparations for overseas treatments in Germany and to ensure professional preliminary examinations, Project Aid plans to expand the management team by a trained nurse and to work with the MRC (Medical Research Council) in The Gambia. After the return of the children to the Gambia, the nurse will also look for their aftertreatment.

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This is another possibility of supporting Project Aid The Gambia: asking your local Pastor or priest to donate the open/free collection of the church service to Project Aid.  The local churches are always looking for serious Partners and sustainable procets where to donate their open collections to. In February the church Kirchengemeinde Hademarschen located in the northern part of Germany has donated two free collections of their attenders at church to Project Aid. The donation was a total of  € 152,61. This amount would be enough to pay for a student´s seat at our kindergarten for a whole academic year. We say thank you very much and recommend to kindly copy this idea.

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Grafik-Patienten-Buschklinik-JHC-2011-bis-2015-1In 2015 Jahaly Health Centre treated 46,190 in- and out-patients – 72 per cent more than 2014 (26,867). One reason: there are enough drugs available at JHC at all times – thanks to your donations. Another reason: for patients drugs are free of charge at Jahaly Heath Centre, other than at state-run health centres. We charge a small fee for treatment or lab service only. This is less than 1 Euro each. But: it is clear that we face a major increase in expenses for drugs. Most patients were out-patients, 897 patients (2014: 587) were admitted. 250 patients (2014: 185) were referred by our ambulance car to Bansang hospital for further treatment. 2015 we had 108 deliveries (64 boys, 41 girls) at Jahaly Health Centre, 21 more than in 2014. The amount of lab tests increased to 23,074 (2014: 19,650), whereof 11,192 were tests for Malaria, whereof  1,941 were positiv.

These numbers are part of our “Annual Report 2015″, just published by “Project Aid The Gambia”. Each year our sister organization puts together such a report for the Gambian government (Ministry of Health). The annual report is packed full with information on all activities and projects of the year under review.

The full Annual Report 2015 und all Annual Reports since 2007 You may read | here |.

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We say thank you very much to our partners of the German NGO “Friedensdorf (Peace Village) International” for the generous donation of the funds for buying the tractor. The people of Jahaly and Madina thank you very much. A news story of “Friedensdorf Online Report” on this story (German only) | here |