Juba Link Newsletter No. 5


The vesico-vaginal fistula visit, supported by The UK Governments  “Sudan Bilateral Programme Fund Grant”,The UNFPA and The British Medical Association Humanitarian Aid Fund, was undertaken between 24th November and the 12th December 2009. A total of 18 operations were undertaken by Mike Bishop and John Makunde– a somewhat disappointing number but most of the patients were difficult re-do cases and took time. Another major problem was that the venue for the visit was to have been in Wau Teaching Hospital but the day before the team arrived it was decided by the UNFPA that the operating theatres were not fit for use and needed major refits before such surgery could be undertaken there.  This gave Juba Teaching Hospital staff very little time to organise patients and theatres.

  • Fiona Henderson was able to use her experience as an anaesthetist to resuscitate 2 critical newborn babies.
  • The team was involved in the surgery of a patient who had been shot through the right shoulder, damaging the lung and the main artery and nerves to the arm. The anaesthetic skills were particularly important in this patient’s survival.
  • The team were involved in the postoperative care following a number of major surgical operations. There were serious concerns. No observations appeared to be done, no fluid balance charts were kept and if the IV fluids or drugs for the patient ran out then they were simply discontinued by the nurse without any reference to a doctor.
  • Sharon Evemy was given a small gynae ward (10 bedded) and a couple of nurses  for specific use of the fistula patients. Sharonwas able to teach by “good practice” the necessity for regular observations to be undertaken.
  • The team were featured on South Sudan TV and were able to promote support for the patients with VVF and the need for good quality and more widely available obstetric services.
  • Zorina Walsh attended a workshop on a mental health programme for prisoners hosted by UNODC and made some useful connections for the future. Tim Walsh undertook  training sessions in surgery on the wards. It was felt overall that this was a successful visit and the vesico-vaginal fistula team would be happy to return if invited.
  •  A Mental Health team, comprising of Dr Jane Newson-Smith, Mr Bob Marks and Ms Kim Hayter and also midwife Mrs France Reed are departed for Juba on the 5th March 2010 for a 3 week visit.  Arrangements have been made for the mental health team to visit and teach in the prison as well as at Juba Teaching Hospital. France will be running a workshop for midwives and also discussing protocols with the Consultant Obstetrician and his team as well as “hands-on” training. This visit is kindly supported by the Charitable Trust Foundation.
  • Work is continuing to get the School of Nursing/Midwifery open.  Students have been accepted and it is a matter of getting tutors in place and the building refurbished.
  • Members of the Juba Link were invited to write a 5 year strategy for health care inSouthern Sudanby the Ministry of Health (GOSS) and this was submitted at the end of January 2010.  It is hoped that there will be some funding for this which will go towards building accommodation for visiting trainers.
  • Paediatric Registrar (Dr Louis Danga) from Juba Teaching Hospital has recently undertaken a 3 month attachment atPooleHospitaland he is currently awaiting the results of Part III of the Membership of theRoyalCollegeof Paediatrics & Child Health.
  • Dr Dario Kuron Lado, Consultant Surgeon at Juba Teaching Hospital, will be arriving on the Isle of Wight at the beginning of March 2010 to undertake an induction period with Mr John Makunde (Consultant Urologist) before he undertakes a 2 year training period in urology at theNorthMiddlesexHospitalunder the clinical supervision of Mr George Fowlis.

Fundraising :

There have been various fundraising activities over the last 6 months, including Kim Hayter’s parachute jump, the Bikeathon  which raised approximately £4,000 (thanks to TJ’s Gym and Jane Newson-Smith), 2 car boot sales, pub quiz  and Tim and Zorina were successful in their attempt to get on to the TV programme “Cash in the Attic.”  Gloria Hunniford and John Cameron (the expert) came to their house in November  for a days filming and “found” suitable articles for auction.  The auction took place at Shanklin Auction Rooms in February and realised £1097.  This amount will be donated to the Juba Link by Tim and Zorina and gift aided thus adding approximately £300 to the total amount.  The programme will be on BBC TV a bit later in the year.  It is hoped some media exposure will raise the profile of the Juba Link.

Ongoing fundraising is required to keep the project running and new ideas needed.

The second AGMwill meet on the 26th April 2010 at the Riverside Centre,Newport,Isle of Wight at 5.30pm.  All current “Friends of St Mary’s Hospital,IW-Juba Teaching Hospital Link” are to be invited personally and an advert will be placed in the local paper announcing the meeting so that the public may attend.


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