Health Students on Vital Placement in Rural Uganda

With the next seven months of funding now secure for the National Institute of Health Sciences, Jonglei (NIHSJ)  it’s great news for the students there who can now continue with their training as clinical officers – vitally important for South Sudan, where many health workers have only a very basic level of training and there are fewer than 200 doctors serving an area larger than France. Clinical officers do many of the same jobs as doctors and also have a managerial role in health centres.

These first year Clinical Officers have been on placement for ten days in Opit (a rural area in northern Uganda) working out in the community and a medical centre.

”We had a good experience and we were able not only to practice what we learned in class, but to be in the community and health centres which was a learning experience. We gained more knowledge of disease occurrence and effects in the communities, and interacting with the people of Opit also helped us increase our communication skills.” John Yak Deng Yak, 1st Year Clinical officer 

The CO’s  have been busy undertaking demographic surveys and health facility assessment: looking at how the centres are run and the population they serve.

Assessing needs in the community:

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At the local health centre:

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They have also been involved in community health education, assessment of nutrition and health needs. All of this is invaluable experience that will equip them for working in health centres in South Sudan once qualified.

While the funding for NIHSJ is secure now to the end of the academic year, more is needed to enable these students to continue into the next year of training. Could you help? 

For more information about the National Institute of Health Sciences, Jonglei click here

To give to support the training of clinical officers at the Institute click here

Watch a video on this project here.