Gib doctor heads to Uganda to help improve health care

DR IOLA WILLIAMS: Off to Uganda to give medical aid.

A GIBRALTAR doctor is sacrificing her holiday time in order to give medical help to those who need it in Uganda.

Dr Iola Williams, an obstetrician/gynaecologist from St Bernard’s Hospital, will be spending part of her annual leave on her second visit to the Luwero District of Central Uganda, around 50 miles from the capital, Kampala. Still recovering from the brutal Bush Wars of the 1980s, Luwero is a particularly poor part of the country.

“It all began when I went to a reunion at my medical school in Cardiff,” said Dr Williams. “I met a couple of GPs who were already working with the Care for Uganda charity and they suggested I might have something to offer.

“GPs and midwives had already been out to Luwero to train community health promoters in the basics of health care provision. Last year it was my first visit out there but it was dreadful. I saw a set of newborn triplets die for the lack of basic health care.”

Dr Williams is a member of Care for Uganda, a small charity that helps raise the standards of maternal health in the country. She will visit Uganda again at the end of February, and her bosses at the Gibraltar Health Authority have donated two sets of Caesarean Section surgical instruments to take with her. While there, she will be teaching doctors and midwives in the techniques of ultrasound and common obstetric problems.

“When I was there last year I could see that they had been given the right machines but these machines were lying there unused and covered in red dust, because no-one knew how to use them,” said Dr Williams. “There is so much easy stuff that could make such a big difference.”

More information and details of sponsorship for Care for Uganda can be found at www.careforuganda.org

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