Children with Disability

Over the years we had been working in Uganda we had seen numerous children suffering from physical problems, such as club foot, that would have been treated soon after birth in UK. The level of healthcare in Uganda, particularly in remote rural areas, mean these conditions go untreated. Children grow up with these defects and they reach adulthood with the problems that led to the Yatana Support Group being established.

In 2015 we identified a possible means of addressing this problem. An orthopaedic hospital has been established in Kumi, about 50 miles north of Kimaluli-Butta, by Dr. John Ekure. He is a Ugandan orthopaedic surgeon with extensive experience in the USA. He has returned to Uganda and has built a high quality hospital with very competent staff. Following initial discussions, KRDP asked the support group to identify five children who could go to Kumi for assessment. Of these, Dr Ekure felt three needed operations to address their conditions. The other two were less severe but would benefit from a course of physiotherapy and some corrective footwear. In 2016 KRDP funded the prescribed treatment, which was very successful in four cases. In the fifth, there was some improvement but not as much as hoped due to underlying medical conditions.

This initial experience confirmed that children with these conditions could be helped. It was also a learning experience in terms of the initial assessment of potential patients and of the need for high quality wound care. To address this last point, KRDP funded a special training course at Kumi Hospital which was attended by staff from Kimtab Clinic.

In 2108, a  second group of six children were assessed by Dr. Ekure. KRDP has funded their operations. When we visited Uganda later in the year, five operations had been carried out and one was still to follow. The results looked very promising with children able to walk much better than previously. We saw several more children with similiar problems and will be looking to continue this aspect of our work.

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