July update!

Hello from Kigali Everyone!

I hope this newsletter finds you all well, things are going great here in Rwanda.  I have been here now for a bit more than 2 weeks and while there have been ups and downs I can say without hesitation that we are making great progress towards making sure that things go as smoothly as possible after we launch the training on September 3rd.

Thank you to all of you wonderful folks who have volunteered your time and are generously supporting the cost of your own airfare!  I sincerely hope that we find additional funds to pay everyone back, but for now this solution is letting us move forward.  However, we can still use more trainers, especially during the months of October and November!   PURE is covering in country transportation and lodging, and we will coordinate the details of your trip.  Please reply to this email if you’re ultrasound trained and you’re interested in spending a couple weeks in beautiful Rwanda teaching your colleagues.

News wise, we ran into a problem in that the consideration we were to have from the Senate of the National University of Rwanda(NUR) didn’t happen as planned as they deferred any consideration of new programs due to a very full meeting agenda.  We will be considered on August 5th.  However, awaiting that decision will make it too late for us to plan properly for the training.  Our solution is that we are running this training to launch in September as a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) course, and will upgrade the status to a course to qualify for an academic certificate from the NUR once that approval is complete.  The general structure and content of the training will not change, nor will our research agenda, but doing this as CPD simplifies several factors.

While here in Rwanda we connected with leaders from the Kigali Health Institutes (KHI, trains allied health professions like ultrasound techs), the Rwandan Radiologic Society, and the Society for Ultrasound in Rwanda.  As we are all institutions dedicated to ultrasound education, we thought to work together through the formation of a consortium or organizations all working on the same common goal.  This will directly benefit PURE through greater local radiologist involvement for supervision and guidance as well as sharing of the responsibility for creation of a diploma in ultrasound for physicians as KHI has been assigned the same task.  We also all thought that our cooperation would decrease duplication of efforts and provide a direct means for sharing resources and accessing funding opportunities we each individually may not have been eligible for.  Most importantly, combining our efforts will better serve Rwandan healthcare practitioners and patients.

In the next couple weeks I hope to add some great detail to our website regarding the training curriculum, the agenda for trainers, info on lodging and transportation in Rwanda, and a map of our district hospitals with lots of other great details.

Any Rotarians on this list?  This Wednesday evening I will be presenting PURE to the Kigali chapter of the Rotary.  Their grants system is in the middle of some big changes, so I’m having a bit of trouble understanding where a grant to PURE would fall, but it would be great to make a connection between international chapters both interested in the same issue!

Thanks everyone, hope to hear from many of you soon,

Take care,
Liz