Engeye Health Clinic in Uganda
On Tuesday, November 10, 2009 at 6:00PM PST Dr. Stephanie Van Dyke will join a panel of distinguished health care professionals at the World Affairs Council in San Francisco, California for a discussion on the trials and triumphs of providing health care in Africa. The panel is composed of members from non-profit organizations, such as Doctors Without Borders, Merlin, and the Institute for OneWorld Health. Each organization has been asked to comment on what practices and policies have worked and what haven’t from the standpoint of medicine, leadership, and sustainability.
As mentioned in the program description, “Improving healthcare in Africa is a daunting task. Recent statistics issued by the World Health Organization show that Africa holds 11 percent of the world’s population but bears 90 percent of the burden for neglected tropical diseases, which include malaria and yellow fever. In addition, most of the world’s 33 million infected with HIV reside in sub-Saharan Africa. Many are aware of the problems facing Africa, but how deep is the understanding of possible solutions? Join the Council as we move beyond healthcare policy toward pragmatic implementation and finding solutions that work.”
While living and volunteering in Katooke Village in rural Uganda in 2000, Stephanie Van Dyke witnessed an urgent need for basic medical care. It was during this time that Stephanie met and befriended John Kalule, a native Ugandan, who helped her adjust to and understand the challenges posed by life in rural Africa. She returned to the U.S. with renewed purpose, completely redirecting her life toward pursuing a career in medicine, with the ultimate goal of building self-sustaining clinics in Uganda and other underserved areas.
In the years following Stephanie’s work in Katooke Village, Stephanie and John Kalule remained in touch. Stephanie discussed her vision to build a clinic in an underserved region of Uganda and both agreed to devote themselves to ensuring the project’s success. Stephanie and fellow volunteers, including her parents and Gary Arnold, set off for Uganda in August of 2006 to lay the groundwork for what would be the Engeye Health Clinic – the first local medical facility ever for the people of Ddegeya Village. The clinic was inaugurated in April 2007 by Engeye’s first team of medical students, nurses and doctors. The team saw and treated nearly a thousand patients over two weeks, a testament to the great need for medical resources. Malaria and STD's were rampant and pneumonia, HIV, and skin infections were widespread. This trip proved to be one of the first of many profoundly inspirational learning experiences for volunteers.
With each medical mission, Engeye grows wiser, new partnerships are formed, cross-cultural collaboration is strengthened, diagnostic protocols and treatments are fine-tuned, and the quality of medical services provided are vastly improved. The clinic is on its way to becoming self-sufficient, an ultimate goal of the organization, as it is currently staffed entirely with native Ugandans.
For more information on the event, please visit the World Affairs Council Website: http://www.itsyourworld.org/assnfe/ev.asp?ID=2621&SnID=1027046289
About the Engeye Health Clinic
The Engeye Health Clinic is located in Ddegeya Village in southern Uganda. The mission of the Engeye Health Clinic is to improve living conditions and reduce unnecessary suffering in rural Africa through education and compassionate health care. Dr. Stephanie Van Dyke, Dr. Carlos Elguero, John Leisure, Jay Shah, Misty Richards and Anny Su comprise the board of directors for the 501(c) (3) tax deductible, nonprofit organization. For more information, visit: