Airtel Uganda staff, helping out an old lady during one of the health camps.

Masindi district will this Saturday play host a regional health camp that is sponsored by Airtel Uganda, aimed at providing health care and health information to less fortunate Ugandans across the country.

In partnership with Hinds Feet Project Uganda, various medical practitioners and health institutions such as Red Cross, Cancer Institute, Doctor Agrawal, Re-pad, Marie Stopes, Unilever, District health centers among others have volunteered their services and medical personnel to participate in the cause and treat thousands of Ugandans with free diagnosis, treatment and referrals to major hospitals.

The health camps have also dedicated time to educating Ugandans on different topics such as HIV prevention, sexual and reproductive health, maternal and child health, nutrition, prevention of communicable and infectious diseases among others.

And this year alone, residents in Kampala and Kisoro districts have already benefitted from the free medical care outreaches that Airtel is currently holding every quarter.

Commenting about the upcoming health camp in Masindi, Mrs. Charity Bukenya, Airtel Uganda’s CSR Manager said health is a pertinent issue in our country and information is vital key in formulating our behavior and health choices; Airtel thus comes in to support the work of the Government and other health practitioners, not only make this information accessible, but also to bring the doctors closer to where there is a shortage of health information as well as evidence of health challenges among the people.

“Research shows that Masindi still has a high prevalence of infectious and communicable diseases and we would like to, not only treat these diseases, but also teach the residents how to stay healthy,” she commented, adding that Airtel will also give out clothes to the needy.

“As part of the camp, we shall also offer minor surgeries, dental care, health and nutrition, re-pad project that involves boys alongside the girls learning how to make the pads and help the girls stay in school through avoiding stigmatization, there will be blood donation, a maternal health program, counseling, treatment of communicable diseases, First Aid and Primary Health Care information,” Ms. Bukenya added, and noted that since October is ‘cancer month’, people will be screened for Cervical, Breast, Prostate Cancer and other abnormal growths that may be of concern.

According to the District Health Office, there have been some efforts to improve the health situations; however, the health status of the population of Masindi is still poor.

A high prevalence of infectious and communicable diseases and Malnutrition among the general population especially in children under 5 still contributes to a heavy disease burden.

Malaria is the major disease in the District with morbidity at 37% in 2005/06, followed by coughs (17%), intestinal worms (6%), and skin infections (4%); as provided by our research partners Hinds Feet Project Uganda.

Other environmental health issues include acute diarrhea affecting 2.6% of the population, pneumonia, eye infections and genital infections.

“Our effort is a drop in the ocean that supports what several other generous organizations are doing to make conscious and deliberate steps towards fulfilling the sustainable development goal #3 which is about ensuring good health and well being and we at Airtel know ‘together we can’,” Ms. Bukenya said.

 

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