I'm a Health Worker

“I’m a Health Worker”: Saving Lives in Rural Uganda

Bernard Tayebwa and Dr. Solomon AsiimweBernard Tayebwa knows how important his job is to his community. His favorite part of being a senior clinical officer at Rugyeyo Health Center III in Kanungu District, Uganda, is nothing less than “saving the lives of patients.”

To the north in Kabarole District, Dr. Solomon Asiimwe articulates the flip side of the lifesaving nature of their work. The toughest part of his job as a medical officer at Kitojo Integrated Development Association, an NGO hospital, “is when I care for patients and sometimes they don’t improve, sometimes they are terminally ill and they pass away.” Read more »

At the Click of a Button: Jane Ruth Aceng Shares Good News

Jane Ruth AcengJane Ruth Aceng sits in a black leather chair in her office at the Uganda Ministry of Health. Even though she’s soft-spoken, you can hear the authority in her voice. And, as a nearby camera flash clicks and lights the room, you can sense she’s an important person. “I’m the director general of health services,” she states. “That means I’m the technical head for health in the country.”

Jane describes how planning for the health workforce used to be a nightmare. Uganda previously used a paper-based system to store information on the country’s health workers. Now, using a national health workforce information system called HRHIS, she shares good news, “We have a system where by just a click of a button, you know who is available in the system, you know how many health workers we have in the country, you know their qualifications, you know where they are, and you know what they are doing.” Read more »

Nine Reasons We Place Health Workers at the Center of Our Efforts

Maureen KanyiginyaMaureen Kanyiginya is a young midwife with a gentle and confident presence. Sitting on a bench in a grassy area outside the rural health center where she works, in western Uganda’s Kabarole District, she looks into the camera and states, “I’m a health worker.” She says she loves mothers, and it’s easy to see how sincere she is. “I really love delivering these babies,” she adds quietly. “I make mothers comfortable.”

Her calm demeanor contrasts with the serious challenges she faces in her job. The facility where she works has no power, so she conducts her deliveries with a small lantern. She lacks the proper instruments to do her job well, and often doesn’t have the drugs that mothers need, due to stockouts. Her personal safety is also a concern. “Sometimes I walk alone in the night from my house to the unit,” she shares. Read more »

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