Following on from the Pan African Thoracic Society (PATS) spirometry training which took place last year, 2018, at Kibong’oto Infectious Diseases Hospital (KIDH) in Kilmanjaro, Tanzania we were able to use our newly achieved spirometry skills to host our first Healthy Lungs for Life event in the country.
On Saturday 29 June 2019, the European Lung Foundation (ELF) with the Pan African Thoracic Society (PATS), with Kibong’oto Infectious Diseases Hospital (KIDH) (national referral hospital for tuberculosis and other lung diseases) under the leadership of Dr Stellah Mpagama, Siha District Hospital (SDH), under the leadership of Dr Abdul Msuya, and Kilimanjaro Christian Medical Centre (KCMC), under the leadership of Dr Ronald Mbwasi came together to offer free spirometry testing to the community. The event was advertised in the community by flyers at the market, word of mouth and by two radio announcements.
The Siha District Commissioner, Mr. Onesmo Buswelu, was present to bless the event. Each organisation involved was able to share their vision and current work on improving lung health in Tanzania. In the spirit of the event Dr Buswelu went on to have his own lungs tested.
Free spirometry testing was offered to all. Following careful screening, 96 participants underwent spirometry testing. Simultaneously, Body Mass Index (BMI) and Blood pressure (BP) were checked and Tuberculosis (TB) and (HIV) testing was offered by the Siha District medical team. From the screening tool used, 1 case of severe uncontrolled hypertension was dealt with using the onsite emergency kit and 2 further participants referred to KIHD for further TB evaluation. All abnormal cases were counselled, given their result and referred to the KIDH for further assessment.
It was a beautiful day in a field in the Siha district of Kilimanjaro, Tanzania where the PATS goal of awareness and improvement of lung health has been raised and assistance provided to those who need it the most.
Thank you to every one of the 25 volunteers who willingly came to give of their time and expertise to make this event possible. An extra special thanks to Dr Stellah Mpagama who works tirelessly to improve lung health in Tanzania. Looking forward to the next time!