80 KIDA BABIES ARE HIV FREE SINCE EID PROGRAM STARTED!

 KIDA Hospital participates in the Uganda Ministry of Health program to eliminate mother to child transmission of HIV, which is possible when antiretroviral drugs are taken during pregnancy and at delivery. Timing is everything. The babies are seen in the Early Infant Diagnosis Clinic (EID).
 
In September four babies born to HIV positive mothers turned 18 months, the time when a baby can be tested accurately for the presence or absence of the virus.

All four "graduated" from HIV care! Everyone, mothers and staff members alike, is happy when both the a baby's PCR and HIV antibody test results come back negative. Lucy, one of the mothers said, "Thank God that my child doesn't need any more drugs, and he will not have to suffer with a life-long infection like so many do."

Talemuza Seleveno is HIV-free! No more drugs!

ELECTRICITY HAS ARRIVED!

An email just arrived from Rev. Ezra with pictures of a KIDA staff party to celebrate the electricity hookup! 
"It's a new world!" said Phedress, KIDA's bookkeeper, who, since she joined KIDA staff in 2008, has been depending on candles and lanterns for 12 hours every night in her apartment.
The celebration included speeches and an unveiling of the staff house security light by Hon. Alex Ruhunda, a member of Uganda's parliament who had lobbied hard for this electricty development. Many from the surrounding community gathered and celebrated along with KIDA's drama group with dancing to express their joy.  
 
Community members dance to celebrate new electric lights
KIDA drama members don their dance costumes for the big party after the work day

KIDA'S HEALTH CARE COOP GROWS FASTER WITH NEW NAME

To help promote KIDA's Community Insuance plan (KCHIP), KIDA's leaders chose a more understandable name. "KIDA Bataka Twejanjabe" means, literally, "Let us as a local community take care of our health." Many village groups already have burial cooperatives called "Bataka Twezike" that help members in their burial arrangements.  The new health coop name, appealing to the Ugandan cooperative spirit, is increasing enrollment even more this quarter.  Membership in the second quarter reached 1032 people or 201 families.  KIDA's leaders, who were trained by Health Partners, continue the hard work of promoting membership to village groups so that the poor can better afford their medical care.

Ezra Musobozi presents the health coop plan to a village group
Ezra Musobozi presents the health coop plan to a village group

A KIDA SUCCESS STORY

Joseph Mboneko was orphaned by HIV/AIDS at age 13 and faced a very uncertain future with no means to attend school. KIDA embraced him : restored his hope, counseled him, provided medical care, supported his school fees and his vocational training from 2006 to 2013.  Since then he has been working as a motorcycle mechanic while saving money in a wooden box under his bed. After two years of saving, he had enough to purchase his own motorcycle!  Now he has an additional earning potential: giving "boda boda" rides to customers in need of transport over dirt roads around the Ruwenzori hilly terrain.

Joseph with his benefactors: Ezra and Marjorie Musobozi, KIDA founders

KIDA CONFRONTS MALNUTRITION

KIDA will never abandon its mission to empower people with useful health information! On Fridays when mothers bring their babies for vaccinations, KIDA staff and volunteers have a captive audience, so they use the opportunity to teach mothers about infant and child nutrition, hygiene, family planning, and other health topics.  HIV positive mothers meet together for support and get advice about breastfeeding during this time as well.  These women even got a cooking demonstration on a recent Friday and were treated to a nutritious drink made with avocado and a vegetable salad.  Has that ever happened to you while you waited for a doctor's appointment?

Marjorie teaches nutrition while mothers with infants wait in the queue for vaccinations
Making a healthy juice drink

34 VOCATIONAL STUDENTS RECEIVE DIPLOMAS

On June 19, 2015, 34 KIDA vocational students participated in a memorable graduation ceremony and received diplomas after completing 14 months of training and passing their final exams. Courses in carpentry, tailoring and building construction prepare students to earn incomes from marketable skills and create their own jobs.

Many of the graduates were vulnerable youth, orphaned due to HIV/AIDS, or had to leave school when taking care of sick parents. Were it not for vocational training these kids would remain destitute.  The graduation was a large public event that included members of Parliament, local politicians and other dignitaries.

The chief guest for this event came all the way from Kampala on Rev. Ezra’s invitation.  Dr. Henry Mwebesa, the country’s Commissioner of Quality Assurance in the Ministry of Health, did a thorough inspection of KIDA Hospital that was unannounced prior to the ceremony, which included commissioning the General Ward. Dr. Mwebesa delivered a speech at the graduation ceremony on behalf of his boss, the Hon. Dr. Elioda Tumwesigye, the Uganda Minister of Health. 

34 KIDA vocational graduates participated in the ceremony

KIDA HOSPITAL GETS AN UNANNOUNCED INSPECTION!

Dr. Henry Mwebesa, Uganda's commissioner in charge of Quality Assurance, represented Hon. Dr Elioda Tumwesigye, the Uganda Minister of Health, as the "chief guest" at KIDA's Vocational School graduation ceremony on June 19th. Before the ceremony, Dr. Mwebesa, did a thorough inspection of KIDA Hospital, found everything satisfactory, and later commissioned the General Ward. He was impresssed with cleanliness, organization and professionalism at the hospital and will report his findings to Dr. Tumwesigye, the Minister of Health back in Kampala.  This event greatly helps KIDA Hospital qualify for some Uganda government funding.

Dr. Charles Irumba, Medical Director (right) describes KIDA Hospital services to Dr. Mwebesa (center)

Lights Beneath the Mountains of the Moon

 In 2013, the Government of Uganda implemented a national plan to bring electricity to the country’s rural areas. Though this plan has hit the occasional road bump, the electrical grid has now arrived in the vicinity of the KIDA Hospital!

 With a hook up to the new national grid, Kitojo Hospital will no longer be reliant on a costly generator that supplements some solar power.  Last year alone, the expenditure for this unpredictable source of electricity was over $4,000. Until the complete hookup is accomplished, Kitojo Hospital staff members are living with no electricity in their homes, and there has been some turnover due to these conditions.

 The arrival of reliable electricity will go a long way to improving conditions both at the hospital and within the living quarters of hospital staff.  It is a huge advancement for a facility that offers so much to the community it serves.  Thanks to generous donors, KIDA’s cost of $9,800 to hook up all the buildings to the national grid has now been raised!  The work is currently underway! 

 Reliable light for this region is more than seeing in the dark, it will assist KIDA in its steadfast efforts to improve and save lives.  

KIDA STAFF AND COMMUNITY DONATE BLOOD

KIDA Hospital staff members are grateful to the Blood Bank in Fort Portal for supplying blood when they need it in cases of childbirth hemorrhage, emergency surgery and anemia caused by severe malaria. The Blood Bank supplies blood to the entire Kabarole District of Uganda.  KIDA Hospital was recently approved as a collection site, and the first donation day took place on May 11, 2015.

25 units of blood were collected from healthy volunteers including vocational students.  They enjoyed the experience of giving back.  One volunteer was quoted, “Now that I work in a hospital, I really appreciate the importance of blood, so I should donate and save someone’s life out there.”

KIDA Empowers Village Groups with Affordable Health Care

Recently one of KIDA’s challenges has been to market a new idea for the people: affordable health insurance!  The pre-payment of small affordable premiums into a cooperative health plan allows poor people to stop worrying about how they will pay even small medical bills when they need treatment.

The community surrounding KIDA Hospital loves the hospital but often finds it too expensive for them, although the fees are very low and are not expected to cover the full cost of care. An impoverished family can be sent into a scramble to sell property to pay even small hospital fees when illness strikes. Result: people avoid getting medical care when they need it.  They suffer, as they did before the hospital arrived, and often die from treatable conditions.

KIDA is solving this problem by actively promoting a cooperative health insurance plan: the KIDA Community Health Insurance Plan or KCHIP. For a small membership fee and a quarterly payment, members can access care for very small co-payments.  KIDA has identified over 50 small community groups to whom KIDA leaders promote the plan.  The goal was to sign up 15 full groups in the plan by the end of June, 2015, and increasing KCHIP membership to 1,000. They exceeded the membership target with 1032 paid members but fell short of the 15 full group total by 5, enrolling 10 groups by quarter's end. The heavy marketing work by KIDA's senior staff is continuing.

KCHIP group celebratory dance
Rev. Ezra leads a new KCHIP group in a celebratory dance

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