Sarafina Sickle Cell Society, a non-government organization in Mukono donated hydroxyurea medicine worth Shillings 45 million to Mukono General Hospital.
The donation has come at a time when the facility’s sickle cell clinic incharge is decrying limited supply of hydroxyurea and other vital clinic reagents.
The clinic at Mukono General Hospital started three years back with support from Mulago National Referral Hospital to reduce the distances travelled by clients from districts of Greater Mukono to seek sickle cell services in Kampala.
Sarafina Bukirwa, an enrolled nurse and the Executive Director of Sarafina Society reveals securing medicine support from Spring Pharmacy in the United Kingdom.
According to her, the donated type of medicine can only be administered after thorough blood tests to determine the level of blood cells within sickle cell warriors.
“Hydroxyurea quickly stabilizes cells besides reducing complications such as stroke and recurrent hospitalization.”
Dr. Gabriel Maganda, the District Sickle Cell Focal Person says the clinic appeals to the government to provide timely supply of necessary reagents so as enable testing and screening at the facility.
He reveals that severally they are forced to turn away new clients seeking to screen and the already registered patients require regular testing but the complete blood count-CBC machine lacks necessary reagents such as sodium metabisulphite.
CBC machine is a set of medical laboratory tests that provide information about cells in the person’s body. Dr. Maganda says it is important to identify counts for white, red blood cells and platelets within babies whose parents ignored screening before conceiving before making six months.
The sickle cell clinic at Mukono general hospital is run every Thursday in a week. Because of the increasing numbers, patients are given different return codes depending on their health condition.
So far 620 patients attend the clinic for treatment. Out of those 100 are above the age of eighteen years. The treatment offered to them currently include antibiotics, folic acid which supports building of new blood cells, fansidar and multi-vitamins.
Walter Akonya 23, a literature teacher at Kenton high school in Mukono and also a sickle cell worrier is however grateful to the clinic at Mukono saying reduced on the distance they were travelling to access treatment besides spending on emergency vehicles.
He appeals to the government to provide the clinic with all necessary medicine and reagents so as to improve the lives of the sicklers.
Nonetheless, Dr. Anthony Kkonde, the Mukono municipality medical director appeals to residents especially those intending to start marriage relationships to ensure screening for sickle cell as they do tests for other sexually transmitted diseases to avoid future regrets.