DukeEngage Uganda-Engineering World Health
Description: This was an 8 week summer program with the goal of improving healthcare through repairing medical equipment in Uganda. I spent the first month learning the techniques required to repair medical equipment from the BME faculty at Makerere University. During the second month, I was placed at Kamuli General Hospital in Kamuli, Uganda and worked with two other team members to perform actual repairs needed at the hospital. Our team also set up a GoFundMe to raise about $1200, which was spent constructing a wheelchair-accessible ramp in front of the outpatient department, a portable generator shed to power the NICU, and two attendants’ shelters outside the maternity and female wards.
Relation to GC focus: This was an extremely valuable experience that really broadened my horizons on the status of healthcare across the world. Physically interacting with patients and hospital staff in Uganda strengthened my motivation to strive towards engineering better medicines that can be used not only in America but in low-resource settings as well. My work with the Ugandan BME students at Makerere University as well as the nurses and physicians at Kamuli General Hospital allowed me to build treasurable relationships with people who may have different cultural values and norms. I hope to utilize what I have experienced and learned to continue being involved with global health projects in the future aiming to improve the state of healthcare in less-developed nations.