On the Grounds OneMama Health Clinic Update
Moving to More Local Resources During Hard Economic Times
In recent times, OneMama has been working at bare minimums. Due to the financial climate of the world, the pandemic effects, local scarcity of resources, and the Ugandan government restrictions in place, the OneMama Health Clinic still fights to stay open! Read below for what happened when OneMama recently invited the Ugandan Parliament to visit the clinic.
OneMama Health Clinic seeks a Class III medical center status in Uganda.
Since OneMama raised the ranks from birthing babies in a mud hut, sometimes in secrecy, on blood-soiled, reused mats with little to no birthing supplies… to a government ranked Class II public healthcare center working in modern buildings with electricity, funded by local sustainable and international sources, and serving thousands of patients a year!
And NOW, OneMama fights to climb the ranks again by asking the Ugandan Parliament to grant the clinic as a Class III health center bringing healthcare to a sub-county level and offering broader services to the local region.
To better understand the structure of the health system in Uganda, here’s a great diagram showing the various tiers and meaning of each:
Structure of the health system in Uganda.
The Area Member of the Ugandan Parliament, Honorary Nsanja Patrick, and 15 Other Honorary Members Visited the OneMama Clinic July 30th, 2022.
On July 30th, 2022, the area member of parliament and fifteen other Honorary Members of Parliament from different constituencies paid a courtesy call to the OneMama medical facility. The Members of Parliament were welcomes at the site by the OneMama Board of Directors, the Community Advisory Board, district political leaders, sub-county leaders, OneMama staff and community members of OneMama.
During the Honorary Members’ visit, we were able to present our detailed report of our clinic services, needs, and obstacles, and request for the OneMama Health Clinic to be considered for an increase in rank to a Class III sub-county public healthcare facility.
The report included an introduction, brief background, our objectives, achievements, challenges and future plans.
Included among the challenges presented to the Honorary Members are as follows:
- Limited funds for some medical supplies, domestic violence sensitization, medical personnel, etc.
- Limited rooms or wards for patients as we have a small ward where women, men, and children are all admitted.
- No capital development for our women groups to enhance economic sustainability programs.
- Running water. There was a recent extension of piped water brought to Kirindi, so we also request for our OneMama Health Clinic to be considered for piped water. Without appropriate water infrastructure and services, our patients, healthcare workers, and communities are at increased risk of disease. For example, if patients or staff drink unsafe water when they are thirsty, or when taking oral medications, they could get sick with a waterborne disease. Water infrastructure and services are also essential to allow healthcare workers to perform appropriate infection prevention and control (IPC) practices. For example, both healthcare workers and patients need access to hand hygiene supplies to reduce the risk of spreading infections through unwashed hands. Water is also essential for cleaning rooms, beds, floors, toilets, sheets and laundry. It is central to patient experiences of health care, as it enables them to remain hydrated, to clean themselves, and to reduce the risk of infections.
Simply put, without water, a health care facility isn’t a health care facility. So, it is our humble prayer that the OneMama Health Clinic gets the piped clean and safe running water as a permanent solution to solve the water problems we have long endured.
- Lack of ambulance for referrals, especially mothers during birthing. Given the fact that we have a maternity center, there are circumstances where there is a need for an ambulance for referrals. However, we use Boda bodas when uncertainties come, and this is very risky to mothers who get complications in delivery during transportation.
- Lack of an ultrasound scanner. Given the nature of our clinic that deals with maternity, there is need for a scanner for regular checkups of mothers and for detecting complications so as to make referrals before it is too late.
- Shortages of beds and mattresses for patients, especially those admitted when having serious cases. There are many days when there’s too many patients and when beds are few and there were no accommodations available for these patients. In addition, we have limited rooms or wards to accommodate patients.
- The effect of COVID-19 has led to an increase in teenage pregnancies. During our prenatal and immunization services, we have realized that a number of female children below 18 years of age have reproduced, and many have dropped out of school. We therefore are able to equip these underage mothers with skills for their sustainability.
- In addition, so many female students either perform poorly or drop out of school because they lack sanitary pads according to the research made. Because of this, we started making reusable sanitary pads to give to the girls for free. However, due to the handicapping by COVID, we have had limited funding and resources to continue.
- Accreditation. OneMama Health Clinic serves a much larger population now than it used to. People come from near and far seeking the services at our clinic. Given the funding constraints, our sustainability is at stake. We therefore request for the Honorary Member’s guidance for government accreditation so as to receive PHC funds and other governmental supplied services.
- Road access. Road accessibility to the facility, especially to pregnant mothers during rainy season, is extremely challenging. The road needs improvement for easy and safe accessibility to and from the center.
In his address, the area member of Parliament, Honorary Nsanja Patrick, made the following remarks:
- Donated 15 mattresses and 20 loaves of bread.
- Promised to rehabilitate the road to the OneMama Health Clinic and according to the district road engineer, the road needs 350 litres of fuel (diesel) worth 2,500,000 Uganda Shillings. He directed the sub-county political head to bring a grader tractor to immediately start the road and will hand him diesel gas. The road rehabilitation began on August 4th, 2022, and the chairman has called and confirmed that the machines are ready to begin the work.
- Also promised to present the accreditation process for OneMama Health Clinic facility to Parliament for review. He informed that the government is phasing out grade II health centers and in case his lobbying goes through with the Committee of Health in the Parliament, OneMama will be upgraded to a Health Center III.
- Plans to involve all stake holders for the case of running water. This needs a lot of money, and he has so many issues to deal with in the whole constituency, that all must be involved to bring forth this action. However, he will come in at a later stage and will support to a degree, however the rest of the other stakeholders will have to take a lead.
- Create a partnership to help with the increased cases of teenage pregnancy and for those female children who have reproduced who are below 18 years old and for the lack of sanitary pads among school going girls. The Member of Parliament for Nansana Municipality, Wakiso District, promised to connect us to organizations that can help them. He requested the directors of OneMama to write up a project proposal on this challenge.
A Win for OneMama Health Clinic!
In a nutshell, the Area Member of Parliament promised to cooperate with the Board of Directors of OneMama to see that the challenges facing the facility get solutions one by one. He said that there is need to support Mama Jamira in improving her herbs and also continuous research for improvements of these herbs. She thanked Mama Jamira for this almost voluntary work of treating the community with herbs and helping mothers deliver babies safely.
OneMama is asking YOU…
Can you consider our small grassroots non-profit health center as one of your organizations that you support with your philanthropic efforts this year?
OR… Do you or a family member or friend know a large private donor that would be willing to fund our clinic? If you have any referrals, please send an email introduction to Siobhan Neilland directly at [email protected].
Personal Letter from OneMama CEO/Founder, Siobhan Neilland:
You are our OneMama World Family…and…. I literally wake up at night worried about keeping things running in these trying times. Resources are scarce and engagement is very low (the lowest in our 16 years since conception).
I struggle personally with this because OneMama is the only baby I’ll ever truly have, and as the founding Mama to this baby, I feel like a single mom, and I struggle to keep the resources needed so we can continue helping other Mamas, ones who really need the help.
OneMama.org is struggling and needs a miracle right NOW. Donations are so low they are not covering all the medical supplies we need or the staff, and we have had some rough choices to make. OneMama was forced again to reduce medical staff and supplies, essential programs, education, and much more and sadly the community is feeling it!
The other day, I was talking to someone about this baby I never knew I had, and they were so in awe by the story and how well OneMama’s franchise program really works. They asked, “Why don’t you have more clinics?”
I just cried… because this model really does work, and we are saving lives and improving health and livelihood for so many Mamas, their babies, and families in need. Yet there simply isn’t enough help. I can’t do this alone…We need to raise up together to support our global communities.
I feel like a struggling single mother, hoping my baby can spread her wings and fly… yet the lack of resources is crippling her.
So, I ask the Universe for help. And I ask you, if you are at all inspired and, like me, feel it deep in your heart that you can make a difference to all mother’s on this planet… then I ask you to please, go to OneMama.org and see how you can get involved.
Together, we can raise up all Mothers and let all babies know that they matter in this world!
Please, if you are not fully familiar with us, please visit our website for more info at OneMama.org or read below.
More About OneMama
OneMama supplies birthing kits and medical supplies, builds medical clinics, and creates a marketplace for women and their families to sell their crafts or crops. We do our work in places where people live on less than $1 per day. One birthing kit prevents mother-to-child HIV transmission and supports a woman giving birth with medicines and supplies administered by a Traditional Midwife, there to help.
OneMama’s goal is to build 250 clinics around the world that will build and support health and birthing clinics in places that do not have access to health services. We support local Traditional Midwives to deliver culturally appropriate care that is augmented by the best medical tests, treatments, and interventions available.
The OneMama Model
OneMama developed a unique model for services that can be replicated in the hardest-to-reach communities around the world. Because we honor traditional forms of health care by supporting Traditional Midwives, we gain entry into communities that would not typically trust Western medical techniques.
We are able to bring in medical interventions that work to save mothers and infant’s lives, protecting women through childbirth, reducing pain and the birth injuries, prevent HIV transmission from mother to baby, support malaria testing and treatment, and providing health education and services to the entire family.
Our healthcare services work in conjunction with our economic development programs, which supply families with goods needed to create crafts or crops to sell on our international and local marketplaces — so that eventually clinic members can support their own local, rural clinics. We have created a sustainable model for health care that can be replicated and become sustainable within 5-10 years.
Thanks for taking the time to read this. Thank YOU again for ALL the work you do and have done all these years for OneMama. I am so incredibly grateful to know there are humans like YOU making big changes in this wild world.
“We are all OneMama Living on this One Mother Earth!…”
“We all want to feel like we are loved, and we matter in this world”