By Lorraine Anyango.
Every three months, the burden of Neurosurgical cases is reduced. The long list of those waiting for the services for months shortened as well. Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Teaching and Referral Hospital (JOOTRH) has consistently held Neurosurgical Camps in partnership with the Kisumu Neuroscience Initiative. Yesterday another five neurosurgeons flew miles to Kisumu ready to offer services.
The five are Dr. Victor Awour, Dr.Chris Karas, Dr. Jefferey Lobel, Dr. Robert Geller, and Dr. Hiren Patel. They are accompanied by Dr. Mitchelle Walker who is an anesthesiologist. All the doctors are from the USA, they are joined by yet other three medical students from Germany. The team also has nurses and scrap techs among others.
The big agenda in this just started camp is how to improve quality.” We are keen on quality and not quantity of surgeries” Dr. Awour, the team lead said emphatically. The camp is a build-up to position Kisumu as a neurosurgical hub.
The first day of this camp had four female patients operated on. Three had issues with their spine while the last one had a brain tumor. Among the patients is a 14-year-old girl who fell from a height-raised position, she is paralyzed from mid-chest down, the operation will seek to stabilize her spinal code and ease pressure on it so that her condition is not worsened and she gains mobility while in a wheelchair.
Dr. Awounda said that since the inception of the Neuro camps, new aspects are introduced to each camp. “Every time we come here we try and introduce something else that is geared toward improving quality, this season we have put in efforts to ensure that our charts are better organized, keep the patients organized and well-identified hence better outcomes.” Dr. Awour said.
While receiving the guest, Dr. George Rae the CEO of JOOTRH said that the camps will develop a thresh hold of the medical team with the capacity to continue with the surgeries.
The camp Commences on 20th February and runs till March 3rd. Screening of patients to benefit from this camp has been ongoing. The patients are required to have a valid NHIF membership.
Alongside this camp is the 3rd Kisumu Neurosurgery symposium which will be on 25th February at Acacia Premier Hotel. Registration for the same is ongoing.
The symposium which will be both in-person attendance and virtual will bring together surgeons across the world to discuss guidelines and future neurosurgical care.
These camps are not just to benefit patients, they are aimed at addressing human resources gaps by offering exchange in learning. These camps are foundational steps towards establishing an 80-bed neurosurgical inpatient facility equipped with a modern lift to link it with the existing theatre complex at JOOTRH.