News / Africa

Funding Boosts Fistula Treatment Program in Kenya

Healing the Pain of Obstetric FistulaHealing the Pain of Obstetric Fistula
x
Healing the Pain of Obstetric Fistula
Healing the Pain of Obstetric Fistula

Multimedia

Audio
Kim Lewis
The Fistula Foundation, a U.S,-based organization dedicated to treating obstetric fistula, announced recently that it received a $2 million grant to support their work to treat women with obstetric fistula in Kenya, through a new program, Action on Fistula. 
 
The international organization says the money, provided by the pharmaceutical company, Astellas Pharma Europe LTD., is the largest single grant they have ever received, and the biggest corporate commitment ever made to fistula treatment. 
 
The funding will help treat 1,200 women in Kenya with life-changing surgery.  In addition, the program has the potential to serve as a model for comprehensive fistula treatment in other countries.
 
Kate Grant, is the CEO of Fistula Foundation. She explained that fistula impacts a woman both physically and emotionally.   
 
“Obstetric Fistula is a childbirth injury,”  she explained. “It’s the result of unrelieved obstructed labor—the kind of labor that if a woman was giving birth in the United States or another industrialized developed country would likely have a C-section, and she wouldn’t end up with a fistula.  But, for millions of women that give birth at home without access to emergency obstetric care, this injury can result.”
 
Grant said it basically is an injury that leaves women incontinent.  However she said the tears that create the incontinence can be sewn up by a well-trained competent surgeon. 
 
The CEO pointed out that the physical ramifications of fistula, such as incontinence, have a far reaching effect on the woman’s mental health.
 
“If you live in an underdeveloped country, often these women are ostracized because of the leaking of bodily waste, urine and feces…. And without often hot running water and products that we would have in a developed country –Depend pads or something like that -- the women again, are ostracized and frequently left by their husbands,” explained Grant.
 
However, through the new program in Kenya, Action on Fistula, women suffering from the condition will have the hope of leading a healthy life.
 
“We are going to be spending 1.5 million euros, which is a little over $2 million, over three years, targeting Kenya exclusively,”  highlighted Grant. “What we’ve got is really a three-pronged approach.  One we’re going to be treating women with injury.  We hope to treat at least 1,200 women in those three years.  We’re going to be training fistula surgeons…and, we’re going to be pursuing, really quite robust outreach efforts.”
 
She added they want to reach out to women living in remote areas who may not know treatment exists, to let them know they can be treated for free under the Kenya program.
 
Ultimately, Grant emphasized, they hope the program in Kenya can serve as a model for treatment of fistula in other countries.

You May Like

Computer Crash Halts US Visa, Passport Operation

Problems with database have resulted in extensive backlog of applications, affected State Department's consular offices all over the world More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

World Bank: Boko Haram Stalls African Aid Projects

Islamist group’s terrorism sets back agriculture, health efforts in Cameroon, Chad and Nigeria More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnelsi
X
July 24, 2014 4:42 AM
The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video MH17's 'Black Boxes' Could Reveal Crash Details

The government of Malaysia now has custody of the cockpit voice and flight data recorders from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was hit by a missile over Ukraine before crashing last week. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports, the so-called black boxes may hold information about the final minutes of the flight.
Video

Video Living in the Shadows Panel Discussion

Following a screening of the new VOA documentary, "AIDS - Living in the Shadows," at the World AIDS conference in Melbourne, a panel discussed the film and how to combat the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid