In partnership with All Nations Christian Care, WER is providing free dental treatment to people living in IDP (internally displaced persons) camps in northern Uganda. This is enabling large numbers of people who would otherwise be unable to afford dental care to gain access to quality oral health care.
Private dental clinics in northern Uganda charge 3000 Ugandan Shillings (approximately £1) to extract a tooth. This is how much it costs a mother in northern Uganda to feed her family for three days. It’s not difficult to see why, when faced with this choice, people choose to sacrifice dental health care for the sake of being able to put food on the table. As a result, thousands of people in the camps live with the daily agony of poor oral health, which can have serious implications on their overall health and detrimental effects on eating, sleeping and family life.
In collaboration with Dentaid, WER has provided a mobile dental clinic and a landrover for use in three IDP camps in Lira district. With a population of over 760,000 people, Lira district previously had only one dental unit, located in Lira town. The treatment provided by the mobile clinic is therefore invaluable in ensuring that the dental needs of those living in the camps are met.
WER has also provided a cash grant in order to support the employment of a qualified dental assistant, ensuring that the dental treatment provided is of a high and professional standard.
The dental clinic will be of a longer-term benefit to the local population when security returns to the region. Based in Adwir hospital it will provide an essential rural health service until the re-establishment of permanent dental clinics in northern rural Uganda.
This mobile dental clinic is the only one of its kind to provide free treatment to people living in the camps and was officially launched by WER UK’s Director of Operations, Alex Haxton, in Barr IDP camp on 11th November 2005. Nearly four hundred people from Barr IDP camp received free dental treatment within the first three days and more than 100 people are currently attending the clinic for treatment each day.
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