After successfully treating childbirth injuries in Ethiopia for nearly 45 years, we’re taking Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s clinical skills, experience, and compassion to Uganda. Together with our Ugandan partner Terrewode, the Hamlin team will develop a treatment facility for childbirth injuries in Soroti, Uganda.
First, we have chosen Uganda because there is a significant need. Based on national statistics and our experience in Ethiopia, we estimate that there are 50,000 Ugandan women living with obstetric fistula. Like many other countries, the number of hospitals in Uganda with space and capacity to treat fistula and similar childbirth injuries is low.
Second, we have a strong, local partner. Terrewode is a community-based organization that has worked with obstetric fistula survivors in Uganda since 1999 and has developed a highly successful model for rehabilitating patients and reintegrating them into their communities. Terrewode provides women with skills to get them back on their feet after years of living with fistula or similar injuries.
Replicating the Hamlin Model of Care
Terrewode Women’s Community Hospital will include a 30-bed fistula treatment center and a rehabilitation center. At full capacity, the hospital will be able to treat 600 women with childbirth injuries annually and help them reintegrate into their communities.
Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia will provide leadership in clinical excellence, training, and capacity building for the Terrewode medical team. This will include extensive training at Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital and supportive supervision during the start-up stages in Uganda. Terrewode Women’s Community Hospital will set the standard of care for childbirth injuries as Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s hospitals have in Ethiopia.
Funds raised will initially support the capital funding for construction and equipping of the hospital in 2018. We are also committed to support all operating costs until the end of 2020, by which time the hospital should be working at full capacity.
We remain dedicated to the women of Ethiopia
While it is a big commitment, this new endeavor will not impact our long-standing work in Ethiopia. In addition to supporting the main hospital in Addis Ababa and our regional hospitals throughout the country, we are continually expanding the number and reach of our expertly trained Hamlin midwives.
We look forward to sharing updates on this exciting new project as it progresses.