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Mahama Refugee Camp Gets First Medicalized Health Facility

by Daniel Sabiiti
4:37 pm

The medical team at work

  The Ministry of Health in collaboration with Save the Children has inaugurated the first Mahama Refugee Camp Medicalized Health Centre which will be delivering cesarean sections and blood transfusion services.

The centre, worth Rwf350 million, will benefit camp communities who have to make kilometers to get these services (on referral) at Kirehe District Hospital.

The centre built with the support of UN Population Fund, Refugee Agency, Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration and Japan Embassy, receives 140 maternity cases and conducts 70 of them while  60 others are referred to Kirehe district hospital, especially when they involve c-section.

The inauguration of the centre means that most of the cases, even those involving c-section might be concluded at the level of the camp.

At the launch of the new centre

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony on May 30, 2023, Zachee Iyakaremye, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Health, said that providing cesarean section and blood transfusion services will reduce maternal mortality and morbidity, referrals to Kirehe District Hospital and cost by bringing the services closer to refugees and residents from the host community.

“Mothers used to spend hours on the rough road to undergo Cesarean section operations at Kirehe District Hospital. This could result in maternal mortality. Providing these emergency services within the camp will reduce all such risks,” Iyakaremye said.

As of April 25th, the centre recorded 39 successful cesarean section operations.

Medical team preparing their equipment

The 23-year-old refugee Joseline Mutuyimana was one of the beneficiaries. She  said: “Undergoing cesarean section within the camp has enabled my friends and family members to visit me frequently. I did not experience any infection and I am really very thankful to the medical team.”

Save the Children started its health programme in Mahama Refugee Camp in 2016 in response to the Burundi refugee crisis.

The Mahama health facility started in 2016 as a Primary health care unit.

It now estimates 60,000 patients annually benefiting through the provision of comprehensive and integrated Primary health care including outpatient care, inpatient care, maternal child health, neonatal services, laboratory services, HIV/AIDS services, mental health services, and nutrition services.

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