Partnership Spotlight: The Aruna Abhey Oswal Trust Helps LCIF Build ENT Center in Kenya
According to its Ministry of Health, Kenya has a shortage of ear, nose, and throat (ENT) health care. There are more than 600,000 Kenyans who cannot hear properly. Without access to early treatment, they are at risk of completely losing their sense of hearing. Rendered deaf, a parent may lose the ability to work and provide for their family. It also could mean a child might not hear the loving voice of his or her mother or the instructions from their teacher at school, putting them at risk of falling behind and becoming dependent on others.
Last year, the Aruna Ahbey Oswal Trust joined forces with LCIF to create a partnership called the Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF)/ Aruna Abhey Oswal Trust Humanitarian Initiative Partnership. This partnership supports LCIF’s initiatives in sight, youth, disaster relief, measles, and humanitarian efforts. Partners are a large and important part of how LCIF is able to carry out life-changing projects and programs, for example, the construction of an ENT center within M.P. Shah Hospital in Kenya.
The new, state-of-the-art Aruna Abhey Oswal Pediatric ENT Centre at the Children’s Medical Centre is addressing the dire need for ENT care in the region. Inaugurated in January 2017, the clinic provides diagnoses, evaluations, and treatments for both common and complex ENT, head, and neck complications. It is estimated that the center will provide consultations for 2,500 patients and 390 major procedures will be performed annually.
The new ENT center is an addition to a hospital that has been around since the 1930s. M.P. Shah Hospital is a not-for-profit hospital that provides medical, nursing, and rehabilitative care. Thirty percent of its revenue supports services for those who could not otherwise afford medical care.
In an area where medical care is not always affordable, this ENT center is an important component in local citizens’ healthcare. Dr. Bhupi Reel, a Consultant Pediatric Intensivist at the hospital said, “The ENT center has been an invaluable addition to the Children’s Hospital. We recently referred a 3-year-old girl who had inhaled a small whistle that was ‘whistling’ with each breath. As we now have the luxury of ENT on site, we were able to take the child to [the operating room] and remove the ‘foreign body’ less than an hour after presentation. This prevented any complicated lung infection that would have likely left her in ICU needing ventilation. In addition, this was carried out as a CSR [corporate social responsibility] activity because the family could not afford treatment. Hence, the pediatric team would like to sincerely extend our gratitude to the introduction of this service.”
The hospital is also doing ENT check-up camps at nearby schools as a corporate social responsibility activity, which means the services are performed at no cost to the patient. In addition, all of the babies born at the hospital receive special testing for hearing and ENT complications at a reduced cost to their families. For babies who do have ENT issues, treatment can begin immediately, improving the likelihood of overcoming their problems.
The Aruna Abhey Oswal Pediatric ENT Centre at the Children’s Medical Centre in M.P. Shah Hospital is just one example of the projects the LCIF/ Aruna Abhey Oswal Trust Humanitarian Initiative Partnership is addressing. Because of the partnership’s support, Kenyans who desperately need ENT care are able to get the help they may not have received otherwise.
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