In November, we broke ground on our hospital expansion in Lwala. We’re tracking the progress and will be posting photos here so that you too can follow the building. Thanks again to all the individuals and our key partners — Ronald McDonald House Charities, Health eVillages, and Izumi Foundation — for making this project possible. [...]
From Mercy Owuor, Deputy Program Director:
I am writing because we are facing a problem.
We are in the midst of a very dry season where all the wells are dry. This is forcing a majority of people with no option but to collect water for domestic use — including drinking water — from the Riana River, which runs across our catchment area. However, this water is not safe for drinking.
More than a week ago, when cases of diarrhea started overwhelming the hospital I knew something was wrong.
Since February 1, the Lwala Community Hospital has treated 88 cases of severe dehydration and diarrhea — 66 of those are suspected cholera cases after all the other diseases were ruled out by tests (there are also media reports mentioning this cholera scare).
I called the Community Health Workers into action. As we sat down reviewing the situation, I said, “So, you know the problem, let’s get into action!”
Currently, there are 16 patients in the hospital ward, and we have seen 4 deaths (2 elderly men and 2 children) due to the outbreak. Our hospital staff and community health workers are responding to this emergency with every means possible, but they can’t do it alone.
WE URGENTLY NEED YOUR HELP.
With your gift of $20, a Community Health Worker can make one home visit and provide a family with water treatment supplies and a hydration kit. CLICK HERE to make your gift.
Here’s what the Lwala Community Hospital staff are doing:
- Working around the clock with the Migori County Ministry of Health to ensure the situation was contained
- Created an isolation room, specifically for cholera cases.
- Increasing our hygiene standards
- Calling in back-up hospital staff to help with the workload
- Maintaining our drugs supply, including IV fluids and antibiotics
- Treating children with oral rehydration therapy (ORT)
- Teaching mothers inexpensive ways to create ORTs at home using salt, water, and sugar
- Distributing free Waterguard and PUR tablets to ensure families can treat their current water supply
- Showing a short movie in Swahili on cholera in the waiting room to better educate patients and caretakers coming into the hospital
Here’s what our Community Health Workers trained in Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) are doing:
- Conducting door-to-door outreach to educate community members on safe water and sanitation
- Demonstrating how to make ORTs
- Distributing Waterguard and PUR tablets
- Visiting local schools to educate students on how to prevent the spread of diarrhea at home and at school
In collaboration with the Kenyan government, public health officials, and partners like Blood:Water Mission, Lwala Community Alliance is working to reduce the number of men, women, and children suffering from this preventable condition.
This current severe outbreak was unanticipated, and we have had to spend outside of our budget to effectively and urgently respond to this dire situation. Help us respond to those in the Lwala community who need our help today!
Deputy Program Director
TO MAKE A DONATION, CLICK HERE