Kitovu Mobile raising funds to purchase a mobile outreach truck

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Since 2014, over 1,732 cancer related patients have been referred to Kitovu Mobile for palliative Care of which 685 died within the year of referral. This is an annual average of 40% death rate for patients referred to Kitovu Mobile. This is unacceptable because while cancer is a long-term and complex disease, it can be prevented and controlled if detected early

Despite current efforts of different stakeholders, early cancer detection is still a very big challenge with studies in Greater Masaka indicating that, for instance, only 7% of the sampled women have ever screened for cervical cancer; the leading cancer in the region and Uganda at large – Justus Rugambwa Chief Executive Officer, Kitovu Mobile said

Based on current experience and studies, the most effective efforts against the cancer burden are those that focus on health education to increase risk perception of not undertaking early cancer screening and improvement of attitudes towards screening while addressing the fears held by ordinary people. This is where Kitovu Mobile’s invaluable experience of mobile awareness and screening campaigning on HIV since mid-80s urgently needs to be replicated – Justus Rugambwa Chief Executive Officer, Kitovu Mobile added

Kitovu Mobile now seeks to raise funds to purchase a mobile outreach truck to accelerate cancer awareness and screening to improve on early cancer detection and reduce preventable cancer related deaths in the 9 Districts of greater Masaka

The major activity to commemorate the 20th anniversary of Palliative Care Association Uganda will take place on 6th December and this is unique dinner coupled with a fundraiser to Kitovu Mobile to purchase a Mobile Clinic vehicle to support community outreach for cancer screening and palliative care services – Mark Donald Mwesiga Country Director Palliative Care Association of Uganda

The purpose of Kitovu Mobile is to lead the provision of innovative, mobile health services and empower marginalized communities affected by HIV/TB, Cancer and other emerging life threatening chronic illnesses in greater Masaka.

Palliative care is an approach that improves the quality of life of patients and their families facing problems associated with life-threatening illness. Improvement comes through the prevention and relief of suffering by means of early identification, assessment and treatment of pain and other problems like physical, psycho-social and spiritual

In Uganda, Palliative care service provision began in 1993 through the establishment of Hospice Africa Uganda and in 1999 the Palliative Care Association Uganda was formed. Working in collaboration with Ministry of Health. 

Palliative care association Uganda has played a key role in initiating and scaling up Palliative Care provision in the country. In 2004, Uganda was the first country to allow specially trained palliative care nurses and clinical officers to prescribe morphine. By December 2018, there was a form of palliative care in at least 97 districts of Uganda and globally, Uganda has been recognized for advanced palliative care provision  – Mark Donald Mwesiga Country Director Palliative Care Association of Uganda said

Kitovu Mobile has health and community empowerment operations that cover the 9 districts of Greater Masaka. 

Kitovu Mobile is widely known for pioneering Home Based Care model in the earliest stages of HIV and AIDS by visiting patients within the confines of their homes, to provide palliative care services in rural remote Lake Victoria areas of Uganda

During the Gala Dinner, Palliative Care Association Uganda will awards individuals and institutions that have contributed greatly to the growth of Palliative Care Services in Uganda over the last 20 years. 

The tickets to the dinner are currently on sale at Palliative Care Association Uganda Secretariat in Kitende on Entebbe Road, Kitovu Mobile in Masaka and at Pope Paul VI Memorial Hotel in Lubaga Kampala

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Frank Byaruhanga is a human rights activist with years of experience in community dialogues, digital communication, advocacy and digital campaigns. He specializes in Media Relation Work, Management and Training with sufficient knowledge in Governance, Accountability, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, Youth-led research, Content developer, Creative Activism, Social Media Management and documentary photography.

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