St Luke Health Centre: Maternal health in Bujuni, Uganda
Project Code: UGPT-1100968 | Location: Bujuni, Uganda
About the Project
The church-run St Luke Health Centre is located in Bujuni Catholic Parish in the Diocese of Hoima, three hours west of Uganda’s capital, Kampala. St Luke offers quality healthcare, including antenatal and postnatal education programs for expectant mothers.
According to available data, 44% of women deliver their babies without the attendance of skilled health personnel. This reflects the limited accessibility and high cost of healthcare in the region for most women.
As the most affordable health centre in the region, St Luke is the only choice for many pregnant women. However, the journey to the centre can involve enormous risk without adequate transport. As the health centre had no ambulance, many pregnant women were forced to travel the long, difficult journey to the centre on the back of the motorbike, despite being in labour. In the first phase of the project, Catholic Mission supported the purchase of an ambulance for St Luke Health Centre to reduce transportation risks.
- Direct beneficiaries
- Indirect beneficiaries
Once women arrived at St Luke’s, appropriate healthcare was not always available. While the health centre is rated HCIII and can perform maternal health functions, its capacity to do so has been limited due to insufficient resources. The health centre was in dire need of essential medical equipment at the commencement of this project. With the support of Catholic Mission, some vital equipment has been purchased, including an ultrasound machine and a baby incubator.
As a result of purchasing new equipment, in-patient attendance has increased across the course of 2018 by 12%, and outcomes for all patients have greatly improved.
The maternity ward requires structural repair and expansion in order to provide a safe environment for mothers, babies and staff, and the only existing toilets are pit latrines built separate to the wards, meaning patients must walk outside the building to reach them. The next phase of the project includes the upgrade and extension of the maternity ward, including self-contained admission rooms and internal bathrooms and toilets.
In the final stage of the project a canteen will be established to generate funds for St Luke to sustain the ongoing functioning of the centre into the future. While there is a hotel close to St Luke’s, there are no cafes or restaurants in the area. By meeting this demand, the health centre can establish an ongoing fund for the maintenance of the ambulance, medical equipment and buildings. While staff and external customers can buy lunch at the canteen, part of the revenue generated will also cover the cost of catering for expectant and new mothers.
360VR view of St Luke Health Centre
How you can make a difference
This project aims to enhance the quality, capacity and accessibility of St Luke Health Centre. Through the upgrade and extension of the maternity ward and the further training of staff, healthcare outcomes for mothers and babies in the Bujuni parish will be greatly improved.
Akugizibwe Maureen, a staff member at St Luke Health Centre, highlights some of the project’s benefits:
“The equipment has helped us to effectively serve many clients without being in a hurry. Secondly, they give us ample time to make them ready for next use, so we can work faster without keeping patients in line while cleaning those which have already been used.