‘sharing skills, transforming lives in Kenya’
The Kenya Orthopaedic Project (KOP), seeks to work collaboratively with Government Hospitals in Kenya to enhance the delivery of trauma and orthopaedic care and services.
We work closely with local Kenyan doctors and nurses to identify patients in need. We raise money through charitable donations to provide trauma surgery free of charge. All care is delivered by our qualified volunteer staff working in collaboration with our Kenyan colleagues.
We have a place a strong emphasis on continuous rehabilitation, follow-up and audit of practice to ensure safe and effective patient management.
KOP believes that creating a sustainable trauma and orthopaedic service is the key to improve the health of the local population. Therefore, in addition to the above, KOP is committed to ongoing two-way teaching and learning during all of our projects by the sharing and transferring of mutual skills in order to create a sustainable trauma service in a resource poor setting.
Why are overseas Orthopaedic projects important?
- Many Orthopaedic problems leave life-long disabling problems that could often be easily treated, were appropriate facilities available.
- Disability-adjusted life years lost through trauma alone is greater than the combined loss from TB, diarrhoea and malaria in the Sub-Saharan region.
- The economic burden to families and society from this is immense as those often affected in the Kenyan environment are working age adults and children.
- Through effective intervention, Orthopaedic surgical services may be comparable to selected primary health services in cost-effectiveness.
- Orthopaedic problems compete with other healthcare needs for the $36 dollars health expenditure per individual spent each year in Sub-Saharan Africa, which contrasts with $2,508 in the UK.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has termed injuries that occur in the developing world a ‘neglected epidemic’ and identified quality Orthopaedic trauma care as a priority
Why is KOP needed?
- Skills shortage – skills in Orthopaedic trauma and elective limb reconstruction within the Government sector are sparse throughout Kenya.
- Financial environment– Orthopaedic surgery is expensive surgery, with an average wage of £1 per day, many patients with traumatic injuries just cannot afford the necessary treatment and are left with permanent pain and disability, often no longer able to provide for their families.
- The work is not being covered by other charities– Orthopaedic surgical missions to developing countries are scarce due to extremely high costs and difficulties in finding, financing and transporting instruments and specialist equipment.
A typical KOP team includes Orthopaedic surgeons, Anaesthetists, Anaesthetic assistants, Theatre nurses, and Theatre Radiographers, as well as a project coordinator.
There are also opportunities for trainees in all such disciplines to be involved.
At present there are two trips each year, lasting 10 days. They are well organised, and planned in conjunction with our Kenyan colleagues.
Kenya is also a beautiful country… and once the hard work is done, there is ample opportunity to enjoy a safari or the beach.