Thursday, October 20, 2011

Winding up...

Sorry for the absence of photos from this post, but I gave my last laptop away to a nice medical student who had his laptop stolen from his room. I can't figure out how to upload a photo from my phone to this blog. By the way - a huge thanks to Clay and Jinny for sending me with 3 Mac laptops to donate! My backpack is certainly lighter as I head home. The travel from Kitgum was uneventful- although there were two live chickens under my seat.. 8 hours wondering if they would peck my ankles- but they were very well behaved! I had a couple of free days so I travelled to Jinja at the head of the Nile River as it starts from Lake Victoria. It was an awesome sight and the bird watching was amazing. I had a a day of rest, reflection and a reminder of how lucky I am to be here. Today, back in Kampala I visited with International Justice Mission staff- their work is amazing and I am proud to be counted as one of their "Freedom Partners". See - you will be impressed. I then visited the Uganda Ministry of Health, Hospice Uganda, and the African Palliative Care Association. I am trying to get an understanding of how hospice is done here in the big city, what the government supports, and what are the challenges. Some of their challenges are similar to the US, but others are unique to Africa - like regulatory and government barriers to opioid prescribing and HUGE numbers of AIDS patients. I was also surprised to hear that dementia is growing in prevalence in Uganda but virtually nothing is available for family caregivers. No one seems to know how to assist caregivers to understand the disease. I learned a lot and hopefully made some good connections for the future. I'll spend tomorrow night at a retreat center near the airport that is designed to promote reconciliation (remember this country has had a big civil war, a turbulent and violent dictator in Idi Amin, and continues to have problems with corruption). I wanted to visit this center started by a Duke Divinity school professor - and it seemed to be a fitting end for the trip. I'll try to add a couple more photos to this blog when I get home- but thanks for reading Over and Out! Laurel

1 comment:

  1. Hi...amazing trip Laurel. Just got through viewing the other blog on your site. The Australian doctor's site (forgot his name...Andrew? It was good to see you in his photos in different situations and read his notes. Look forward to talking to you when you get back to Maine. Much love. Mom