The summer of 2012 was a busy one for BABU and its volunteers. The following is a summary of activities for this past summer.
Rural relief project
BABU’s second successful relief mission: A one day rural relief camp was held just outside of Kathmandu city in a local health post. Three local doctors and two nurses provided care, with assistance from 7 U of T medical student volunteers and several BABU Belgium volunteers. A total of 77 patients saw health care workers to receive necessary care and were advised as to necessary follow up after the program.
Hand hygiene expansion
Volunteers improved hand hygiene facilities primarily in IFCH and Mana Mohan Community Hospital (MMCH). This was done through replacing and improving signage throughout the hospital wards, with particular attention to those areas which serve particularly vulnerable populations. Additionally, bar hand soap was replaced with liquid hand soap, hand sanitizer was placed in every bed in the intensive care areas, and an improved towel system was developed by volunteers to maintain hygiene after the initial cleaning of hands.
Hand hygiene education sessions for health professionals – Volunteers from BABU Canada and BABU Belgium work with head nurses and senior nurses to teach proper hand washing techniques and the importance of hand washing techniques using the GlitterBug hand washing program. A total of four sessions were held with 6 to 10 nurses. Evaluation of the program showed that the education session was described as very valuable, and head nurses would like it to be provided several times per year, and available to all staff members.
Expansion of BABU projects to other hospitals
BABU volunteers ventured out and made contact with the directors of several Kathmandu healthcare facilities for the purpose of expanding BABU’s infection control projects. These were: Hamro Sahayatri Hospital and Birthing Centre, and the Anandaban Leprosy Hospital. It is our hope that in the coming year BABU volunteers will be able to introduce the first phase of BABU’s infection control program, namely ethanol hand sanitizer units, to these facilities.
Improvement of Children’s play facilities
Donations from several U of T medical students enable the development of an outdoor children’s play area at IFCH, which soon became very popular with the patients, bringing smiles to the small patients’ faces. Additionally, volunteers worked to improve murals in the hospital areas.