44,000 people use the current Mucojo Clinic with around 200 out-patients a day. Our ambulances are now safely delivering people to the clinic to a team of passionate and talented nurses, however, the facilities are simply horrific. With no possible government funds on the horizon, unsurprisingly the local government and communities have asked for help to upgrade the clinic.
MUCOJO MATERNITY WARD:
Last year 847 babies were born at the Mucojo clinic in one of two small, dilapidated rooms. There are two old beds in each of the rooms but with up to 8 births per day, many women are forced to give birth or nurse their newborns on the floor and are unable to stay for any form of aftercare. A mother is 1,000 times more likely to die in childbirth in Mucojo than in the UK and we have an opportunity to do something about it.
We are currently fundraising for the first phase of the upgrade; to develop a maternity wing. This will enable mothers to give birth in a safer, better equipped maternity wing and stay in the care of the nurses for longer. The impact for women and their newborn babies will be profound and, no doubt, many more lives will be saved.
Late one night, an old security guard arrived at the gate in Guludo; his 15 year old daughter, who had recently had a baby, had been bitten by a snake. There was no ambulance at the time so we quickly jumped in the landrover, drove straight to his house and took her and her family to Mucojo. She was writhing in pain and, along with her family, was petrified. The nurse and I were the only ones with torches and he rushed her into a small room with a single hospital bed, which looked like it had been there since the clinic was built by the Portuguese in the 1970s. I held the torch while he administered an intravenous painkiller but she sadly passed away soon after. Maybe the very best treatment in the world wouldn’t have saved her but seeing the reality of the Mucojo clinic in action was harrowing. We have an opportunity to change this, and the Nema team is determined to do so.