International Activity Report 2012
MSF in Uganda, 2012
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Outbreaks of cholera, Ebola and Marburg hemorrhagic fever all occurred in Uganda over the course of the year. From March to May, Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) responded to a cholera outbreak in several locations across the Nebbi district of Northern region, treating 600 patients for the disease, which causes profuse diarrhea and can lead to severe dehydration and death.
Between July and October, teams provided medical care to refugees from the conflict in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Staff provided technical expertise for the management of severe malnutrition, treating 500 children at the Nyakabande and Rwamwanja camps in Western region. Teams also provided technical expertise for the management of Ebola and Marburg hemorrhagic fever in August and October, respectively. There is no specific treatment for either of these diseases, and fatality rates vary significantly. MSF was in charge of the Ebola ward in Kagadi hospital, Kibaale district, after the outbreak was declared in July. Teams managed patient care and worked in collaboration with Ministry of Health staff to stop the epidemic.
HIV and TB program
Arua regional referral hospital is the base for a long-standing MSF HIV and TB program, though HIV treatment is now available in 42 centers in Northern region. A significant proportion of patients are from DRC, where access to antiretroviral (ARV) treatment is very limited. By the end of 2012, more than 6,600 people were receiving ARV medication from MSF and nearly 900 patients co-infected with TB were undergoing treatment for both diseases.
Fifi, 27 years old
I came from Bunia in DRC, 200 miles from here. I come here to get ARV drugs but transport is too expensive, so I’ve stayed with my sister in Arua for the past six months. Every two months I come here to collect my free treatment from MSF. My six-year-old daughter tested HIV positive first – that’s how I found out I was sick too. She stays with me; we are both under treatment. In the community, there are people that accept us and others that stigmatize. In Bunia there is no free treatment and I cannot work at the moment.
At the end of 2012 MSF had 456 staff in Uganda. MSF started working in the country in 1986.