Published by joel-worrall

CURE Dominican Republic: How modern software has helped to care for 8000+ children

The following was originally a guest post on New Relic’s blog.


12.10.13 New Relic DR 1
Back in August 2004, I traveled to the Dominican Republic on my first ever short-term service trip to visit the newly opened CURE hospital in Santo Domingo. It was one of the first times I had ever encountered developing world poverty, and as anyone who has been on a similar trip will tell you, it changed me.

I was working as a software consultant for a cable company when myself and another friend in IT made the trip. We spent a week helping the hospital staff handle a few thorny issues, and even though we didn’t feel like we helped as much as we had hoped, the trip had a lasting impact - I saw the work of CURE with my own eyes, and, as a logical thinker and problem-solver, I understood the value proposition of what CURE could do for these kids with physically disabling conditions.

Read the rest of this entry »

CURE Malawi: Why patients and families seek care with CURE

The following was originally a guest post on New Relic’s blog.

A few years ago, our physicians at the CURE hospital in Blantyre, Malawi, conducted a two-year study designed to understand one thing: What is the most important reason our patients and their families seek care at CURE?

12.10.13 New Relic Malawi 1Going into the study, our doctors assumed that our patients would rank things like going to school, getting a job, or all the future opportunities that are available to these kids because of the surgical care they receive as their primary drivers; they assumed that the world-class quality medical care that CURE provides would be a major reason why people come to our hospital.

Instead, what we found was much more raw and immediate, and the results of that study have focused our thinking on what our patients need from us and, therefore, how we oversee our worldwide network of hospitals and programs. Here are the study’s top four reasons that patients come to CURE for care:

Read the rest of this entry »

CURE Uganda: Improving Care with Global Electronic Medical Records

The following was originally a guest post on New Relic’s blog.

It’s Wednesday, and I’m standing in an operating theatre peering over the shoulder of Dr. John Mugamba, the Medical Director of the CURE Children’s Hospital of Uganda, as he performs an ETV/CPC procedure on a three-month-old boy with post-infectious hydrocephalus.

I am literally watching brain surgery in Uganda.

I am literally watching brain surgery in Uganda.

To say Dr. Mugamba is an expert in his field is an understatement. Not only is he the most skilled and best-trained neurosurgeon in Uganda, but he has also performed more ETV/CPC procedures (an operation that involves draining the cerebrospinal fluid from the brain, and preventing new fluid from producing) than any neurosurgeon on the planet. Doctors from around the world come to the tiny town of Mbale to study with this brilliant, humble, and gracious man as he and the staff of the CURE hospital treat and save the lives of nearly 1,000 children with life-threatening neurological conditions every year.

The surgery I’m watching is a success, and after recovery with time and therapy, this infant boy stands a good chance of catching up developmentally and living a full and productive life. Without the procedure, permanent brain damage was only months away and death was imminent. Read the rest of this entry »

CURE Afghanistan: Using technology to heal women and children in Kabul

The following originally appeared as a guest post on New Relic’s blog.

In February 2012, I had the privilege of spending a week at the CURE International Hospital in Afghanistan. I’ve travelled a decent amount for work and never felt unsafe, but flying into Kabul over the mountains at 5AM (9.5 hrs ahead of EST), I had pause for concern.

With a foot of snow on the ground and the scars of decades of war, the airport looked less like an international transport hub than a Soviet-era government compound. For the first time, the thought crossed my mind, “Was this really a good idea?”

But soon after stepping off the plane, any fears I had dissipated as I met regular people trying to get on with daily life. Afghanistan is the definition of a war-torn country, but the Afghan people are warm and generous, and soon enough the physically unfamiliar setting of Kabul was replaced by the familiar welcome that I’ve come to expect at a CURE hospital.

It’s hard to explain, but a CURE hospital is a very special place. Despite how cliche it sounds, it really is an oasis of hope. Life in Afghanistan can be very difficult, but at CURE, things are different. Read the rest of this entry »

When God Shows Up: Isaiah 35 and Healing

25 years ago, I first heard someone use the phase, “God showed up” to talk about an experience they had, and since that time, I’ve always wondered what that phrase, “God showed up” *really* means.

What is it like when God – the Creator and Sustainer of the reality that we know – interacts powerfully in time and space? What happens? How can we know that it was God? Are there distinctive characteristics of His presence, and does He clue us into that at all?

Thankfully, we don’t have to wonder. We’re not the first people to ask this question; God graciously provides answers in the writings of the prophet Isaiah and the Gospel account of Matthew, and the answer has a lot to do with what we do at CURE.
Read the rest of this entry »

Want to work for CURE?

God has blessed CURE with an exciting vision and a clear mission, and He continues to sustain this work with financial and physical resources; but the keys to making CURE possible are the people that commit their time and talents.

I wake up grateful everyday for the men and women (and their families) who sacrifice of themselves – both here in the West and abroad – to serve with CURE; but I also know that each of us considers it a blessing and privilege to be a part of this mission.

Have you ever considered joining our team? If so, here are two positions that are open at US headquarters.

Tell your friends. We’ve got work to do!

Web Wrangler

Do you have a passion for communicating in writing and are excited to help people connect with the stories of the kids that CURE serves via multiple channels: email newsletter, blog, print articles, press releases & social media? Do you have the technical chops to be a part of our marketing and technology team? If so, we want to talk. We have great candidates applying for this role, but we’re keeping the position open for applications for only 2 weeks more, so act now!
Apply Now

Human Resources Lead

If people are the engine that makes CURE go, then the HR lead is the engineer. Over the years, we’ve been blessed with capable, dedicated HR professionals at CURE, and we’re on the hunt for our next one. If that’s you or you know someone who is as outstanding an HR professional as they are committed to the mission of CURE, please tell them about this opportunity.
Apply Now

Update: Landslide in Kijabe, Kenya

We received an update from CURE Kenya Executive Director, Peter Kyalo, today on the situation in Kijabe, Kenya.

The last two days have been dry and we are thankful that no further damage has been caused by the landslide. We are thankful that patients are coming to the hospital and continuing to receive care.

We are in urgent need of water as works to repair the damaged pipes is still on going. The government delivered water two days ago and we are still waiting for more. If we are not able to have water re connected by the end of the week we will need to evaluate our admissions for next week as we will not be able to continue with regular operations.

The road is still very unstable and risky at the moment. We pray that no further damage is done and that we can continue to transport patients back and forth. Unfortunately we are not able to bring any major supplies to the station. We are only allowing small passenger cars on the road as heavy vehicle will compromise the road further.

Keep us in prayers that we can soon have running water and have the road fixed.

Kyalo

Shortly after Kyalo’s first email, we received word that a generous CURE donor and partner had provided a gift to obtain two water tanks to begin to help to alleviate the water storage issues at our hospital.

Please pray that we continue to find favor with government officials and private donors, continue to pray for our staff in Kijabe, and pray for the patients trying to reach CURE for their life-changing surgeries.

See additional impacts of the storms and landslide on the road system in the photos below.

Day 2: Landslide in Kijabe, Kenya

We received the following report from our Executive Director of CURE Kenya, Peter Kyalo:

The road was opened and cars begun to pass today. The government officials came this morning for a meeting and a tour to see the damage. They were very supportive and promised government support.

A few of our staff members and their families were affected by the flooding. One house was completely flattened but they managed to get out before the damage (non-CURE housing). There are no reported casualties in Kijabe and everyone is safe. However some people did not sleep at home because their houses were flooded and could not be accessed due to the mud. It is still raining and therefore difficult to clear all the mud, but work is still on going.

The biggest problem at the moment is water. Most of the pipes bringing water from the mountain were washed away. At the hospital we still have some reservoir, and we are closely monitoring the situation.

Continue to pray for Kijabe as we go through this.

Regards,
Kyalo

We’ve uploaded new pictures from Kijabe of the impact of the landslide.

Landslide in Kijabe, Kenya

Around midnight Eastern Standard Time, CURE received word from our Executive Director of CURE Kenya, Peter Kyalo, that a landslide had occurred in Kijabe, Kenya (the location of the CURE Kenya hospital).

Kijabe is now completely cut off and one cannot access it from the upper road. The railway tunnel has been buried and the railway tracks washed away. The RVA gate was completely washed away and the petrol station flooded. Trees were uprooted from the forest by the rain and washed to Kijabe.

News is still coming in regarding any structural impacts to the mission station or the CURE hospital. Early reports are that the CURE hospital appears to be structurally unharmed.

We are thankful to report that CURE patients and staff are safe.

CURE Kenya (AIC-CURE International Children’s Hospital of Kenya) is part of the larger Kijabe Mission Station. The station is located on the edge of the Great Rift Valley, down the slope from the town of Kijabe.

Kenyan media is reporting that there were fatalities further up the hill where the landslide was more devastating. CURE Kenya as well as the rest of the mission station have been cut off from transportation due to effects of the landslide on the primary road leading in an out of Kijabe. There is also serious concern regarding the rail lines that run through Kijabe.

We will report back with more information as it becomes available.

Please pray for the people of Kijabe and the response efforts underway.


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CURE Ethiopia Clubfoot Symposium, Live on Ustream

ustream

CURE Clubfoot Worldwide (CCW) is pleased to announce that this Saturday, 30th March 2013 beginning at 11:45AM GMT (7:45AM EDT), the Ethiopia National Clubfoot Program is holding an afternoon symposium titled ‘Missed opportunity to prevent a child from permanent disability’ in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. They will be discussing how clubfoot services can be integrated with other child health services in order to increase capacity for identification and referral of children with clubfoot. The hope is that clubfoot might be included in the newborn health checklist.

CCW Ethiopia’s own Adugna Hirpa, program coordinator for the Ethiopia National Clubfoot Programme, has led in organizing this event and is scheduled to present along other notable persons and organizations, including: Mrs. Adey Abate (CURE Ethiopia Executive Director), Professor Wubalem Zewdie (Addis Ababa University Medical faculty), Professor Birhanu Ayana (Addis Ababa University Medical faculty), Tigabu Gebremedhin (CBM Country Director), Professor Bogale Worku (Ethiopian Pediatrics Society President & Addis Ababa University Medical faculty), Professor Tilahun (Ethiopian Pediatrics Society), and Dr Biruk Lapiso (Ethiopian Medical Society President).

In attendance will be representatives from the Ethiopian Pediatrics Society, the Ethiopian Mid wives Society, the Ethiopian Physiotherapy Society, the Ethiopian Orthopedic Society, the Ethiopian Gyni/obs Society, UNICEF, Save The Children, Handicap International, Child Fund Ethiopia, ICRC, CBM, Federal Ministry Of Health, Zewditu Hospital Pediatrics department, Yekatit Hospital Neonate department, Black Lion Hospital Orthopedic department, PACT Ethiopia, World Vision, MSH, Compassion Ethiopia, NCA, Biligates Foundation, CURE Ethiopia, and possibly YOU via UStream.

Interested parties can experience the conference online through UStream on Saturday, May 30 at http://cure.org/symposium or at http://ustre.am/VMEB.