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Gulu University Gets UGX 37M Patient Simulator :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Gulu University Gets UGX 37M Patient Simulator

Dr. Francis Pabalo Pebolo, a lecturer at the university says the patient simulator will help to equip the medical students with practical skills before they progress to handle expectant mothers and babies.
Health trainers demonstrate how to check for baby's heart beat on a newly donated patient simulator. Photo by Michael Ojok

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Gulu University has secured an electronic patient simulator to aid the teaching of medical students and health workers in improving maternal and perinatal health care.

The simulation components worth 37.5 million Shillings were purchased and donated by Rotary International to the University’s Faculty of Medicine.

The machine has been installed at the Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics Simulator Laboratory at Gulu Regional Referral Hospital.

Dr. Francis Pabalo Pebolo, a lecturer at the university says the patient simulator will help to equip the medical students with practical skills before they progress to handle expectant mothers and babies.

Dr. Pebalo notes that students at the faculty had previously been learning practical lessons on real human beings which is sometimes inhumane given the number of students and risky due to their limited skills.

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He says using the patient simulation practices, students and health workers undertaking refresher training will gain knowledge on effective communication that can be transferred into the maternity wards.

According to Dr. Pebalo, simulation-based training for health workers has proved to reduce the risk of complications, especially the maternal mortality rate which is common and sometimes attributed to unskillful health workers.

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Dr. Felix Kaducu, a senior lecturer and dean Faculty of Medicine says the patient simulator will greatly help to improve the skills of the students to match with the growing technology in modern medical practice.

Dr. Kaducu says the innovation will now take Gulu University’s medicine faculty among some of the top Universities in the country providing practical skills to students in reducing complications in maternal and infant health care.

The University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Prof. David Okello Owiny lauded Rotary International for the donation saying it will go a long way in improving the teaching of students at the Medicine Faculty.

Tito Okumu, an Educational Technologist says three similar patient simulators donated by Rotary International have equally been handed over to Kawempe Referral Hospital, Mualgo National Referral Hospital, and Mbale Regional Referral Hospital.

Infant and maternal mortality in Acholi Sub-region still remains a big burden to quality health care.

According to statistics in the National District Health Information System (DHIS2), in 2021, 45 expectant mothers lost their lives during childbirth processes in Gulu District. Records from Gulu District Health Department however indicate that 509 newborn babies died from different health facilities in the district in 2020.

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