Malaria - the main problem at the humedica hospital in Kollo

by Dr. Gabriel Labitzke/RBU,  2011/04/15

With the objective of helping the people living there, Dr Gabriel Labitzke has travelled to Niger already for the second time. Thank you very much, dear Gabriel, for your commitment. Photo: humedica/Simone Winneg.

With the objective of helping the people living there, Dr Gabriel Labitzke has travelled to Niger already for the second time. Thank you very much, dear Gabriel, for your commitment. Photo: humedica/Simone Winneg.

"At least 80 percent of the patients treated by the medical staff of the humedica hospital are suffering from malaria. Most of the time we attend children suffering from severe malaria, who can luckily be treated effectively at our in-patient ward before showing symptoms of further complications.

The children are often in dismal conditions when they are brought to hospital suffering from high temperature and dehydration caused by diarrhoea. By giving them quinine and intravenous treatment, their condition fortunately improves rapidly and they can generally be dismissed after an average stay of three to five days.

Furthermore, malaria poses a substantial threat above all to elderly persons and pregnant women. The partial immunity the majority of the Nigerien population show against malaria is weakened considerably in those persons, and therefore they are more prone to this disease.

The threat malaria poses to unborn children is caused by circulatory disorders to the mothers' uterus. Here, we often encounter children being born underdeveloped and in some cases also stillbirths.

Therefore, our programme for pregnant women includes a provision with several preparations - among others also prophylactic medications against malaria. Due to the long distances, many mothers who come to hospital after their labour has started did not participate in our prenatal programme and therefore we have been faced with some very tragic individual cases.

Both preventive check-ups during pregnancy and food distributions are carried out with the purpose of preventing, recognising and treating diseases - above all malaria. Photo: humedica/Simone Winneg

Last week, a woman came to our hospital, whose labour had started in her sevenths month of pregnancy. Her malaria test turned out positive. When doing an ultrasonic examination, we could no longer determine a heartbeat of the child and we therefore referred the mother to a high-risk delivery to Niamey, where she unfortunately delivered a stillbirth.

It was very sad for the mother - and also for us. Although we are able to help so many persons every single day, such experiences still sink into memory.

Fortunately, such cases are very rare among the mothers who are taken care of at the humedica hospital at regular appointments during their pregnancy. During pregnancy, the local Chief Physician Dr. Yacouba carries out sonographic examinations and tests to diagnose malaria, which reduces the risks for the mothers.

On a whole, I could observe, that fixed structures and well-ordered working processes have established themselves at the humedica hospital. Based on my own experience, I can say that in this the hospital definitely stands out from the Nigerien health system. Even under the simple and partly difficult circumstances that prevail, a well-functioning hospital has developed here.

In comparison to my work in Germany, I have noted the exceptionally large share of children among our patients. Many of them suffer from undernutrition, but most of them can be treated effectively as out-patients.

I hope that the work for the benefit of the population will be continued like this in Kollo."

Therefore we urgently need your help, dear friends and sponsors. Please support the Niger project by means of a targeted donation via our online form, or make a donation to the account below:
      humedica e.V.
      Donation reference "Hospital Niger"
      Account 47 47
      Bank Code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

You can also make a secure, fast and direct contribution via your mobile phone: simply send a text message containing the reference DOC to +49 8 11 90 and support our work with a donation of 5 euros, with 4.83 euros of this amount being directly channelled into our humedica project work. Thank you very much!

Your browser is out-of-date!

Update your browser to view this website correctly.

Update my browser now×