Responsible Electives is committed to supporting small projects aimed at improving delivery of care at host sites. Over the years we have been able to support a range of activities, always at the request of the host site.
2016/17 Responsible Electives
Due to the amazing efforts of our 20616/17 Responsible Elective students, in January 2017 we sent £12,000 to St Francis’s Mission Hospital in Zambia and £4000 to Nkhoma Hospital in Malawi.
We believe that these hospitals and their staff are in the best position to decide how this money should be spent and so we let them choose and send an invoice to The Medical School stating what the money will be spent on prior to the transfer of the money raised by students.
This year Nhkoma decided to split the money with £1000 for renovating the minilab, £1600 to buy four oxygen concentrators and £1400 to be put to their scholarship fund for staff training.
St Francis’ is a teaching hospital and they felt the best way to spend their £12000 would be to build an extension to their meeting room to facilitate teaching and staff training.
Hopefully our next group of students will be able to bring back some photographs and stories so we can learn more about how this money is impacting the hospitals, staff and patients.
Fund raising however is ongoing with 12 students taking part in the Responsible Elective programme in 2017/18.
Ben and Becky, students from Dundee Medical school, fund raised £700 for Nkhoma Mission Hospital. We asked the host what they needed most and we were asked to help purchase tyres for the vehicle used by hospital pharmacist to source vital medical supplies for the hospital and visits to outlying clinics to monitor medicines usage and provide clinical support. Much of the driving is on dirt roads and the hospital was struggling to cope with associated maintenance costs. The students felt safe functioning of the vehicle was vital for the pharmacist to carry his work effectively.
Another example is Lombani Mhango, one of clinical staff at Nkhoma Hospital who was sponsored by Responsible Electives to train in ultrasonography in Tanzania. Lombani explained the importance of ultrasound training in a setting where there is no CT or MRI testing available. He will come back to Malawi fully equipped with a skill that will help improve medical and surgical care at Nkhoma. “Having him skilled in ultrasound will give us better staffing for inpatient and outpatient scanning” commented Dr Morton, Medical Director at Nkhoma Hospital.
Students donated around £2000 worthy of items to Nkhoma mission hospital. Some of these included sphygmomanometers, pocket diagnostic sets, pulse oximeters and blood glucose monitoring systems.
If you would like to raise funds for your elective host then please contact them in advance to find out what they require and where it might best be sourced. Don’t assume you know what they need, or that it will not be available locally. Also, be mindful that charitable donations may be managed in a specific way at your host and can also be a source of upset if not handled sensitively. Detailed information and ideas on how to raise funds are contained in the FUNDRAISING_HANDBOOK.