Army Week kicks off

NYARUGENGE - As the second phase of the Army Week kicked off yesterday in Kigali City, officers of Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) yesterday carried out eye operations on 12 patients at the Central University Hospital of Kigali (CHUK).
Army medical personnel carry out an eye operation on a patient at Byumba hospital (Photo; A. Gahene)
Army medical personnel carry out an eye operation on a patient at Byumba hospital (Photo; A. Gahene)

NYARUGENGE - As the second phase of the Army Week kicked off yesterday in Kigali City, officers of Rwanda Defence Forces (RDF) yesterday carried out eye operations on 12 patients at the Central University Hospital of Kigali (CHUK).

Despite its appellation, the Army Week is slated to end on July 11.

Lt. Col John Byimana, an RDF Orthopaedic Surgeon Consultant who presided over the launch, said that the operations were all successful.

He said that most of the operations carried out were orthopaedic and general surgeries.

He said that about 300 patients will be treated at seven hospitals in the country before the event winds up. The other hospitals are Kibagabaga, Nyamata (Bugesera), Kibungo (Ngoma), Kabgayi, Ruhengeri and Rubavu.

“We did this to give a hand to civilian doctors in providing good and fast services to Rwandans and reduce the number of patients in hospitals who at times spend days or months waiting for operations due to lack of enough surgeons,” Byimana said.

Byimana said that 22 RDF surgeons have been deployed in all the seven hospitals, with 12 in both CHUK and Kibagabaga and two sent to each of the other hospitals.

Other surgeries to be carried out during this period, he said, include neurosurgery and urology.  

“I have been here in agony for about a month now and I did not have hope of having the operation soon,” one of the patients who did not want the names disclosed said.

“I can now hope of coming back to my legs soon to be able to provide for my family which I have not been able to do because of the time I have been here,” another patient said.

Dr.  Theobald Hategekimana, CHUK Director General, thanked the RDF saying that the hospital was congested with patients who needed surgeries.

Currently, he said, the hospital has only eight surgeons and 60 percent of the patients admitted who need surgery are a result of road accidents and need bone surgery and that the hospital has only three orthopaedists.

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