Radiographers seek help to restart x-ray service at Kamuli

Two radiographers are asking for donations of unwanted equipment in time for their next visit to a Ugandan hospital.

Jane Cheveau from the Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Teresa Dawkes from Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust have visited several hospitals in Uganda over the last 10 years as part of the Rotary Doctor Bank charity. They are hoping to source a portable x-ray set such as the monoblock type used by vets to take out on their next visit.

Kamuli Mission Hospital x-ray system
The existing x-ray system.

They have made several visits to Kamuli Mission Hospital in the north of Uganda to help establish the x-ray service there. However, since a previous visit in 2018 the x-ray machine has broken and the hospital cannot afford to replace it. Patients are having to travel two hours to Jinja, the nearest place with x-ray facilities. Since patients are mostly subsistence farmers this is an expense they cannot afford, and if someone is seriously ill or injured the journey may not be possible and therefore many patients do not receive imaging.

Kamuli Mission Hospital chest stand
Jane Cheveau with assistant radiographer Joseph and the hospital’s chest stand.

On previous visits to Kamuli, Cheveau and Dawkes established a darkroom and installed a small automatic film processor, which was donated by a vet in the UK and serviced by Graham Haslam from Wardray Premise. “This helped to improve image quality enormously, as wet developing had been used before, so it is particularly disappointing that there is not an x-ray service available at the moment,” the radiographers state. They are hoping to visit another hospital in Uganda at Ngora in the summer, and would welcome donations of any unwanted analogue equipment such as lightboxes, grids and cassettes to take with them.

X-ray processor at Kamuli Mission Hospital
Teresa Dawkes with the existing processor.

If you can help please contact Jane Cheveau or Teresa Dawkes.

Lead picture: Jane Cheveau showing staff at Kamuli Mission Hospital how to use and maintain the processor.

Published on page 10 of the February 2020 issue of RAD Magazine.

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