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Leicester - Gondar link

[Source: Leicester Warwick Medical School Newsletter]

A link between the medical schools of Leicester and Gondar, Ethiopia, was created in 1997. Gondar is a small town, albeit the third largest city of Ethiopia, with a population of 60,000. It serves a mainly rural community, and is situated in the highlands of Ethiopia, near the Simian mountains. The hospital has 320 beds, and caters for the huge area of NW Ethiopia.

'Through the link, Gondar benefits from teaching and training in clinical and research areas'  

Many people live so far away that they receive no health care. Facilities at the hospital are limited with no intensive care. Wards are crowded and understaffed. Infectious diseases are the most common problems, such as TB, HIV, pneumonia and hepatitis. The medical college trains 50 doctors a year, 80 nurses as well as health assistants, sanitarians and technicians.  

Gondar ophans

'The medical college trains 50 doctors a year, 80 nurses as well as health assistants, sanitarians and technicians.'  

Through the link, Gondar benefits from teaching and training in clinical and research areas; the undertaking of research projects identified to translate into improved clinical practice, while Leicester gains a rare opportunity to acquire skills and experience of medical practice in a different environment; sharing of research and clinical projects.

Gondar course group

Exchange visits have taken place, lasting two to six weeks, including paediatric visits which have resulted in research projects in asthma, disability and anaemia. In a study to find the prevalence and causes of anaemia, 300 children were tested in the field. Results showed a higher prevalence in the lowlands, due to malaria, and 50 per cent of the children had bowel parasitosis at the time of testing! All have now been treated. The diet has a variable iron content depending on the season.  

Funding is raised through grants from charities, local groups and our own efforts, such as concerts given by musical members of the link.

'We have already achieved some of our aims.'  

Our link is still at a very early stage, but we have already achieved some of our aims, and we hope to see further progress over the next three years.

Elaine Carter

A book has been published, in which Gondar and Leicester paediatricians have collaborated to write additional 'tropical' chapters to add to a Leicester-based paediatric textbook. Gondar and Leicester students will all receive a copy. Students from LWMS have already undertaken electives in Gondar.  

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Last updated: 26 November 2002 15:33
Created by: Rachel Tunstall

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