We speak to Manal Hassan, Executive Director of the We Owe it to Egypt Foundation about their latest project tackling inefficiency in Egypt's healthcare system.
It’s no secret that Egypt’s healthcare system is not exactly a shining beacon of excellence but a myriad factors come into play when it comes to pinpointing why and the reason can be partly attributed to a combination of inefficiency and a lack of necessary funding. Given this situation, the Arab African International Bank’s 'We Owe it to Egypt Foundation' is working to remedy the various maladies the healthcare system suffers from. The foundation, which is a developmental one meaning the entirety of donations go directly to their projects since the bank covers all the operational costs, uses a four pronged approach and is currently under taking two major projects to try and reformulate the system – which you could help with.
“Essentially we work on four primary pillars,” Manal Hassan, Executive Director of the foundation tells us. The first two revolve around the elimination of waiting lists at hospitals. “With waiting list situations, what we’ll do is make a deal with the hospital to fund the patients on the waiting list in order to cut it. Alternately sometimes the list exists because for instance, only some of the rooms are actually operational – it’s about the equipment. So we will go in and renovate them.”
Their third pillar involves automating the medical files to eliminate the inefficiency of paperwork. “The foundation has been working since 2005 on making electronic medical files for patients. Often, without automating the files, and with a population with such a high rate of illiteracy, many patients end up with no medical history. The records that do exist are often on paper – these take time to pull out, can get lost, can be missing elements, and cannot be transferred across hospitals.”
Their fourth pillar focus on caravans – specifically, broadening their scope. While many caravans are often specialised and will hyper focus on certain illnesses or problems, the WOTE Foundation’s caravans pride a more comprehensive look and are focused on discovery – checking patients from top to bottom.
Currently, the foundation is working on trying to interconnect the National Cancer Institute, university hospitals, and Ministry of Health hospitals. The massive undertaking will ensure that “cancer patients don’t have to come to Cairo to be diagnosed or treated – and by connecting the various hospitals, and automating the systems, that means their records will be on file and accessible from any hospital they end up in,” Hassan explains.
Essentially, the foundation focuses highly on pinpointing the various issues present in the healthcare system and solving them through implementing real life solutions and monitoring their success. They’ve worked with a number of hospitals across the country including Abo ElRish Mounira, the National Cancer Institute, Ain Shams University, and Zaytoon Hospital.
At the moment, they are working on renovating the entire second floor of the Abo El Rish Mounira hospital and are raising funds from the public for this massive undertaking. The renovation, supervised entirely by the foundation, is a plan that could potentially serve thousands more patients and save thousands more lives. If you’d like to get involved, because y’know philanthropy and good deeds and whatnot, instead of spending that extra dough on nabbing those killer heels that will really only bring on the blisters and then get parked in the deep dark depths of your close, you can donate, or even just spread the word.
To donate, send 19575 to 9797. And if you’d like any additional information, including tours of the hospital, you can call 01002518413.