Aoife Nicholson from the Magbenteh Community Hospital writes “our hospital is based in the Northern Province of Sierra Leone and home to our little laboratory. The lab is small in size and lacking in equipment, nevertheless we carry out approximately 4000 tests a month with a staff of just 6 people!
The hospital is truly amazing, despite getting no financial assistance from the government, all children under 5 years old are treated for free, as are pregnant women and those being tested for HIV. As a result the hospital struggles financially but despite this, no patient is ever turned away. Although, there is a desperate need for new equipment and reagents, there is little money to procure such items.
We are dependent on the kindness of others. Few organisations have been as forth coming in their generosity as Una Health. Implementing biochemistry testing has long been a dream Of Magbenteh Community Hospital. Biochemistry testing is fundamental to the diagnosis and treatment of illness. Up until a few months ago, the Liver, kidney and cardiac function of our patients were guesswork as we had no means of running the tests. After receiving a Reflotron Plus biochemistry analyser, I contacted Fiona Jacobs of Una Health regarding procuring supplies. Her answer truly shocked me. They offered to supply us with reagents to carry out Liver Function Test, Renal Function Tests, Cardiac Function Test, and Lipid Metabolism completely free of charge. They even covered the postage!
The effect of these tests has been momentous, not only to our community but to the patients from all over Sierra Leone and even Guinea, who come to our hospital.
Because of Una Health’s generous donation, we have been able to carry out these tests accurately and affordably. Within the first week of using the supplies, several lives were saved, in particular two patients with extremely impaired kidney function.
Una Health also donated a hand held breast analyser. This has beern a God send as mammograms are only available in the capital city at a huge cost.
HIV test kits were also donated to enable us to continue diagnosing and prolonging the lives of HIV sufferers and ensuring safe blood transfusions.
Ulcers are a big problem in Sierra Leone and Una Health provided helicobacter pylori detection kits to help us with our diagnosis.
I do not have sufficient words to express the difference the kindness of Una Health has made to this struggling laboratory in Sierra Leone.
On behalf of the laboratory staff, hospital staff and patients of Magbenteh Community Hospital, thank you so very much. Long may this friendship continue.
Head of Laboratory,
Magbenteh Community Hospital,
Makeni, Sierra Leone