Building alterations in full swing

by Sven Ramones, 2012/03/03

Since October of last year, humedica has been running a health centre at the Melkadida refugee camp in the south of Ethiopia. What had started with makeshift, but nevertheless professional treatment and supply tents, is now taking shape in form of completely new and improved buildings.

By means of joint efforts, the humedica health post is being set up step by step. Photo: humedica/Sven Ramones

Originally, the idea of building a humedica health centre arose from the simple wish to expand medical care at Melkadida also to the more remote areas and parts of the refugee camp.

In the beginning there was only one major health centre that offered medical treatment at one end of the camp. For those who were seriously ill or very weak, the trip through the entire camp was often too long, and hence they had no access to any kind of help.

Since the beginning of October 2010, the so-called “Health Post” of humedica has been under construction, in order to make support for ill and injured persons at the camp more easily accessible. Up to now, examination and treatment rooms, a pharmacy and waiting areas, registration and administration rooms had been accommodated in several tents.

Together with local staff, the humedica doctors and nurses offered their skills and knowledge to those in need of help under the simplest conditions. Nevertheless, the patients receive highly qualified treatment even now.

In order to expand the possibilities of the health post, construction works for a newly built health centre started a few weeks ago. At an impressive pace, the tents were replaced by stable and spacious buildings of corrugate iron, which is the preferred material for so-called “semi-permanent structure”. Therefore, the inauguration of the new health centre is expected to take place at the beginning of March.

Apart from treatment rooms, a pharmacy, and waiting and administration areas, the new building will also contain a small laboratory and a separate area for psycho-social treatment offered by our partner organisation Jesuit Refugee Service (JRS).

Construction progress of the health post is obvious and for the refugees at Melkadida it means that access to medical care will be improved enormously. Photo: humedica/Simone Winneg

Furthermore, a mother-child ward will soon be set up, where birth preparation and follow-up examinations will be offered, and where women will have the opportunity of bearing their children in a hygienic, clean and medical environment.

While so far, ill and injured patients could only be treated as out-patients at the health post, the new building will also dispose of an in-patient ward, where patients can be treated and observed for short periods of a few days.

In order to improve the vaccination situation for the camp inhabitants, in particular for children, an additional vaccination centre will be set up. Epidemic diseases, such as measles or polio are a continuous threat to the health and even the lives of individuals in an environment like a refugee camp, where many people live together in close quarters.

The expansion and alteration of the humedica health centre will provide more space, better hygiene, more stable structures and a larger scope of medical treatment possibilities. However, it does not only mean medical care for the people at the Melkadida refugee camp. For many of them, the health post also is a ray of hope, which shows them that they are not alone in their misery.

Please continue to support our relief measures at the Horn of Africa by means of your donation also in future. Thank you very much.

      humedica e. V.
      Donation reference “Famine relief Africa
      Account 47 47
      Bank code 734 500 00
      Sparkasse Kaufbeuren

You can also achieve great results by means of sending a short text message: simply send a text message containing the reference DOC to +49 8 11 90. Your mobile bill will be charged with 5 euros, and 4.83 euros of this amount will be channelled directly into the humedica project work.

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