Our Projects

2014 Project Outline

Ethiopia has shown a significant improvement in infant mortality rates. However, the Neonatal Mortality rate remains high at 29 per 1000 births in Ethiopia as compared to 4/1000 in USA. About half of the deaths that happen during the first year of life occur during the first four weeks of life, i.e., the neonatal period (Source: UN Inter-agency Group for Child Mortality Estimation-2013 Report). The top 3 causes of neonatal deaths are birth asphyxia, prematurity and infections. Most of these deaths can be prevented easily through increased knowledge and skills development of neonatal resuscitation and availability of basic neonatal equipments.

Nutrition also plays a significant role in these epidemiological outcomes. Most infants get their nutrition in the form of maternal breast milk. The lack of adequate maternal nutrition has a direct effect on the infant’s growth and development. Transfer of knowledge and skills in neonatal nutrition has significantly contributed in the advancement of neonatology in the developed world.

As part of its efforts to build capacity for neonatal care, HANDS plans to provide training and skill development to the pediatric team at Jimma University (JU) through a series of seminars and workshops throughout 2014 on neonatal resuscitation, nutrition, and management of medical problems arising from prematurity and neonatal infections. Practicing Neonatologists, neonatal nurses and respiratory therapists based in the US, who have volunteered their time to HANDS, will provide the Seminars and Workshops.
During their stay in Ethiopia, volunteers will provide patient care and bedside teaching, and implement and incorporate clinical practices to be instituted at the bedside, such as:

  • Proper documentation of clinical notes on the newborn course of treatment and outcomes.
  • Proper delivery of respiratory support, nutrition and medication through appropriate equipment.
  • Use of monitoring devices available to those newborns that are critical.
  • Encourage mothers to breast feed at all times and providing breast pumps for those in need.

2014 Seminar Schedule

Click here to view the 2014 schedule of Seminars planned by HANDS as part of its project at the JU.

These seminars will be prepared by the team leaders and will be held at The Jimma University Hospital.

They will be conducted throughout the year for a period of 2-4 weeks.

There will be a broad range of important topics covered.

The target audience: Pediatrics staff, residents, interns, nurses and midwives.

Estimated Budget: $10,000 (US Dollars) for each trip

Essential Medical Equipment and Supplies

As part of its commitment to the NICU department at Jimma University HANDS has developed an Essential Medical Equipment and Supplies list. Click the link below to view the list.

Essential Medical Equipment and Supplies List

At the end of its project at Jimma University, HANDS hopes to have established a fully functional Neonatal unit that can develop into a teaching unit to other hospitals and health care centers around it. The goal is to provide the hospitals with the tools and knowledge to work towards lowering the current unacceptably high neonatal mortality rate.