Uganda Blog 2022 Part 1

The dental charity in the UK and overseas

After a long journey stopping over in Amsterdam while half the team spent the day in Brussels we met up in Entebbe. The next morning, we went to purchase sundries needed for clinic and then set off on a 6-hour bus ride to Ruhanga, the location of our first clinic.

We arrived at the clinic just as the Ugandan team were finishing for the day. They had been working hard and had done a great job.  I decided to continue the clinic with the UK half of our team.

We brought in extra help and the team performed 30 extractions. 13 fillings and 12 scalings alongside OHI. I’m so proud of the team.

A slow start to the clinic today but it became busier as the morning wore on. It always amazes me how quickly a team gels and how fast the dentists from the UK get to grips with the working conditions. Catherine and Sarah were naturals! I manned post op and delivered OHI at the benches and George taught the children as they arrived in class groups. Ambrose triaged over 300 people today, 15 adults and 147 children received treatment. 63 Extractions, 38 fillings (with only 2 burs), 25 scales, 48 fluoride and OHI to all. A successful day.

After clinic we returned to the hotel and had our CPD meeting and then changed for dinner which was held at my friend’s home, George and Gertrude. The team got to try guava straight from the tree and for some it was the first taste of local cuisine.

After a beautiful drive through the green hills, we reached Butare. We had worked there in 2017 where I saw my first live birth; a little girl called Shillah. There was a queue waiting for us and children from a neighbouring school came dashing across the field waving and shouting their hellos. This is always so heart-warming.

It was another hot day and, in the afternoon, it reached 29 degrees! The dentists and therapists worked hard and performed 102 extractions, 17 fillings, 16 fluoride applications, 31 scales and OHI was given to everybody at post op. A total of 157people were treated. The therapists are sharing the clean table and treatment roles between themselves, and Becky took over from me on post op in the afternoon. I took over decon working with our driver Richard. It was a tiring day but very satisfying.

We had another very productive day driving up a long steep hill through the fog and coming through the mist to see the church we were working in today was a treat. It beats working in an office for sure. The clinic was held along the road to Rwanda at a place called Nyangoye.

A simple brick-built church with no glass in the windows. The clinic was steady with 121 people receiving OHI, brushes and paste. 62 extractions, 17 fillings, 11 scales and 6 fluoride applications.

Hopefully the 118 children that went home with brushes and paste and newfound knowledge will start to look after their teeth. It was great to see her happy smiling face again.

The clinic was at Kagarama and the location was stunning! The clinic was steady with 105 patients needing 104 teeth extracting. 15 fillings and 9 scales and the obligatory OHI for every patient.

A little boy had to come back into clinic 3 times. He was so upset and I’m not sure the fact Gavin was his dentist didn’t make matters worse. In the end Glory removed his tooth which needed removing and could not be left. Not an hour later did I find him sitting outside clinic drinking a bottle of Fanta! His mother clearly heard none of what we told her.

Haley and Lifen worked with me on post op today; they are both becoming rounded volunteers and are both very helpful and an asset to the team.

After clinic we headed to the lake prepared for a swim, but it was windy and quite cold, so we  took a boat ride around some of the islands on the lake.

Written by Gail Taylor
Team Leader 

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