Post by David Mutanga, a student at Mbarara University of Science and Technology [COESCA]
Lighthouse for Christ Eye Centre is located in Mombasa city. Mombasa city is the coastal city of the nation of Kenya which is in East Africa. Basically, Mombasa is known as an island. It has many historical sites such as the Fort Jesus, The big Tusks, the Swahili Arab old town, and the first restaurant in East Africa. This city is an international tourist destination.
Lighthouse for Christ Eye Centre is a modern Eye hospital in Mombasa, located in the coastal region of Kenya. It has ophthalmologists and clinical officers seeing a large volume of patients.
My reason to choose Lighthouse for Christ was that it is among the highest reputable hospitals in Kenya. It is also a good place for training because there is all the equipment’s required for eye check-up (e.g. visual field machine). There is very skilled personnel with Christ love ready to support students on their campus. As a result of all this, the number of patients seen in a day is always high.
Experience during the Elective
During my tenure time at Lighthouse, I had two days in OPD, three days at the theatre every week. Towards the end of the five weeks at the campus, I was given an opportunity to work with an outreach team which took place over 194 km away from Mombasa.
- OPD (Out Patient Department)
In OPD, I was working with a team of 6 staff. Amongst the six, I was with three senior ophthalmologists: one senior OCO and others were technicians. Handling the patients at OPD, I always had someone to consult and there was someone ready to assist me as much as I needed. Because of this, I really have improved my skills in the Visual field and OCT interpretation.
The team in theatre apart from the surgeon is composed of a team of six technicians who are highly skilled. Throughout my time here, I did around 6 small incision cataract surgeries without close supervision and this increased my confidence in surgery.
-A one-week Phaco workshop with an international expert surgeon from U.S.A permitted me to know more about Phaco machines and it was my first time to appreciate that modern technology.
-During this elective, I did my first cryotherapy after excision to a patient with a conjunctival neoplasm.
-The one week outreach to the rural areas was a good experience for me and in fact, now that I’m coming from a rural area, I would wish that will be part of my work when I graduate.
During the one week camp, I was able to see more than 350 patients and around 68 mature cataracts were diagnosed for surgery.
Mombasa is a big city with significant recreational sites. I enjoyed the walk on the shore of the Indian Ocean and had memorable days of swimming. Commuting within the city is so easy because there are the three wheel motorcycles known as Tuktuk. You can easily move from one end to the other. Security wise, the city is well beefed up, apart from some areas where you see the streets young and old people. Though a big city, it has some parts of the city that is very clean and some very dirty.
To the South, you cross over to the mainland with a ferry. I tried it and during the peak hour, the passenger ferry boards thousands of people across. From the North, you cross by a Nyali bridge and to the west through a causeway.
-To GEMx and COECSA for providing funds to this Elective program.
-To the Medical Director of the Lighthouse Dr. Fredrick Korir (Senior Ophthalmologist – specialized in the Cornea), Dr. Ibrahim Matende (Pediatric Ophthalmologist) and all the staff of Lighthouse.
-To the Department of Ophthalmology Mbarara University of Science and Technology.