Niger: Progressing in small steps with a great project

by Simone Winneg/SRI, 2009/01/14

Already since a couple of years, humedica is involved in the West African country Niger. In the second part of her report, our colleague Simone Winneg focusses on the nature of humedica's aid, its practical consequences and Niger's basic health care problems.

While the clinic registration with the Ministry of Health is making progress, suitable personnel has already been recruited: a local doctor, a gynaecologist, three nurses, a midwife, a lab technician and an accountant will join the international staff to get the hospital off to a good working start.

This huge tower ensures the necessary water supply. Photo: humedica

Administrative tasks, such as drawing up standards and contracts, have already been completed, so that the first phase of medical work can begin as soon as the ministry has given its approval for the clinic. This first phase comprises out-patient treatment, basic health care as well as gynaecological care.

In this last field, the humedica clinic is therefore a referral hospital, but it also offers lab tests. Since preventive measures like vaccinations and prenatal care are carried out by the government programme in the district hospital, they will not form part of the clinic's first phase of operation. We have been promised participation in the government's HIV/AIDS programme as soon as we can ensure admission of patients in the hospital.

Furthermore, humedica is considering sending teams of doctors down which will primarily reinforce local staff through focussed education, training and coaching. Health care in the Republic of Niger suffers in particular from a lack of specialists in the medical sector. For instance, there are just 175 dentists in the entire country.

The front side of the completed humedica clinic. Photo: humedica

The quality of treatment can be improved significantly by having professionals from abroad provide specialized medical training for the local staff of the humedica clinic and the district hospital. Establishing high standards for staff and patients in the clinic's general operations will also have its effect on local health care facilities.

In this sense, patients' health education, which is carried out by our local nurse with added support from UNICEF material, forms a large and important field of activity. At this moment, the clinic is ready for a first operational phase, but still needs further help, in order to be able to offer consistent high quality medical care. In particular, there is a great need for lab material, and the completion of the ward is also a pressing priority.

Please, dear friends and sponsors of humedica, support our important work in Niger with a specific donation.

humedica e.V.
(reference) "Niger"
account 47 47
BLZ 734 500 00
Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

Please also donate online for our medical aid in Niger. Thank you very much for any kind of support.

For you and your families my best wishes for a good year 2009

yours,
Simone Winneg

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