Week in health

Last week the Minister of State in charge of public and primary health care Patrick Ndimubanzi inaugurated two new buildings for Kabgayi Hospital that were constructed with the help of the diocese.

Last week the Minister of State in charge of public and primary health care Patrick Ndimubanzi inaugurated two new buildings for Kabgayi Hospital that were constructed with the help of the diocese. During the launch, Ndimubanzi revealed plans by the health ministry to include eye operation services in the health package covered by community health insurance scheme Mutuelle de Sante.

Currently an eye operation costs about Rwf2 million, but at Kabgayi Hospital, it is only Rwf320,000.

It is on this note that Ndimubanzi promised to hold talks with concerned organs to see how the operation can be included in public health insurance.

The arrangement also arose after mounting concerns that Mutuelle de Santé does not cover certain essential services on grounds that they were expensive despite immense need for such services.

So far, 36 medics from 14 district hospitals across the country have trained in ophthalmology at Kabgayi Hospital, a training that is set to be continuous.

A number of medics also claimed to have previously struggled to detect eye problems due to lack of appropriate equipment, including auto refractors that cost over Rwf66 million before the ministry sought to empower district hospitals to treat some eye diseases instead of transferring every case to Kabgayi Hospital, an eye referral hospital.

However Dr Patrick Muhoza, the director of Kabgayi Hospital, disclosed that the number of eye patients received on daily basis is beyond the hospital’s capacity.

Mean while, the RDF Army Week Medical Outreach that was conducted in Rubavu from March 31 to April 4 involved military doctors providing specialized healthcare services to 2,074 genocide survivors at Mudende and Gisenyi Hospitals.

RDF medical doctors offered free clinical services in orthopedics, gynaecology, urology, internal medicine, psychology, psychiatry, ophthalmology, dermatology, dental, ENT (ear, nose and throat), radiology, laboratory and pharmacy.

Dr Alivera Mukabaramba, the Minister of State for Social Affairs in Ministry of Local Government, explained that the Army Week Medical Services served 35,000 survivors in 26 districts across the country since 2012.

Elsewhere reports in the Journal Nature indicate that the first human trial of a new type of HIV therapy could be a promising weapon in the fight against the virus.

According to the journal, infusions of so-called broadly neutralizing antibodies could suppress the amount of HIV in a patient’s blood.

The approach uses clones of immune proteins taken from a rare individual who has natural control of the disease and scientists hope with further work this could bolster current treatments.

Sadly though, in the Ebola stricken West Africa, the struggle is not anywhere close to being over as experts pointed out that many Ebola survivors are likely to face further health issues including eye and joint problems.

Citing a recent case, experts from WHO concluded that contraction may have risen from sexual contact with someone who had recovered.

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