Over the past months the Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia team has adapted in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure essential clinical services for women continue to be delivered.
The Ethiopian Ministry of Health has reported a slowing in the number of individuals visiting health facilities for cases other than COVID-19, because of the pandemic, and similar reports are being observed at Hamlin hospitals.
However, with reduced numbers of women seen coming forward for assisted births from skilled health personnel at health centres across Ethiopia, including a nine percent reduction in Tigray region, there is now a real risk of an increased likelihood of childbirth injuries.
Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia’s services continue and the team is taking all necessary measures to protect staff, patients and students using WHO guidelines.
A new way of working at Hamlin Hospitals
All patients arriving at Hamlin’s Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital are assessed and monitored for COVID-19. A building, separate from the main hospital, has been set up for patients to stay while this takes place. If no symptoms are detected, their fistula assessment and treatment is scheduled. If patients have symptoms, they will be moved to an isolation room and treated. So far, there have been no COVID-19 cases at any Hamlin hospital, and the dedicated team at Hamlin is working hard to keep it that way.
COVID-19-safe patient care
All patients currently under treatment are educated about the COVID-19 virus and preventative measures to keep them safe. Face masks are being provided to patients and are mandatory while moving around the hospital compound. Hand sanitisers have been made available and visitors from outside the hospital are not permitted.
Supporting Hamlin staff
Staff are provided with hand sanitisers, face masks, and every staff member is required to wash their hands before entering the hospitals and offices. The hospital has also introduced additional disinfecting of wards, offices and other facilities to continue regular services safely.
You can also read more in our supporters update on COVID-19.