The TAMTAM team has arrived in Gulu District, where we will be working in the 6 parishes of the Koro sub-county. The area is transitioning from years of unrest and violence after the Lord's Resistance Army terrorized the Northern regions of Uganda. Currently, the district is experiencing serious drought as well, adding to the challenges of daily life for the people of Gulu.
TAMTAM arrived here this week and are gearing up to train the volunteers who will assist TAMTAM and our partner, Kairos Community Health Organization, in distributing nets and administering follow-up in the villages. As of now, 1,350 nets have arrived in Gulu and will be distributed shortly!
In recent news, Gulu has been struck by a malaria outbreak- article below from a Ugandan national newspaper.
Uganda: Gulu Declares State of Emergency Over Malaria Outbreak
James Eriku, 19 July 2009
Gulu — Gulu District health department has declared a state of emergency over what authorities have described as a severe outbreak of malaria in the district.
The worst hit area is Gulu Municipality while the counties of Omoro and Aswa have registering relatively low number of out patients' attendances, according to statistics released by the health department.
The department released the report in a special council meeting organised by Unicef in conjunction with the district health department and municipal councillors on the sudden disease outbreak at the district council hall on Tuesday.
The acting head of delegation of the Child Focused Organisation in Gulu sub-office, Dr Vincent Yomani, said the data they have indicates that out patients' department attendance of malaria rose from 25/100 to 40/100 in the district - accounting for about 43/100 school absenteeism rate among children.
"There is an urgent need to strengthen preventive measures as well as encouraging the local people to visit health facilities early enough to keep avoidable deaths at bay," Dr Yomani said.
He attributed the sudden rise of malaria cases to the unpleasant climatic conditions that favours breeding of mosquitoes in many parts of the district.
Meanwhile, Dr Paul Onek, the District Health Officer, said the district has already alerted the Health Ministry about the outbreak because the district does not have the capacity to fight the upsurge as they relied mainly on donor agencies.
"We do not have adequate support from the central government to fight this epidemic and this leaves us at the mercy of our partners in health," Dr Onek said. He revealed that the district receives about Shs300 million per annum for drugs and other management expenses, an amount that he said is far below the need of the health sector in the district.
Copyright © 2009 The Monitor. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com).