Beginning a medical knowledge revolution

At Gulu Regional Referral Hospital, Uganda

 

Here at Book Aid International we not only support existing libraries but help set up libraries where there were none before.

Today, the Gulu Regional Referral Hospital in northern Uganda boasts a library spanning three rooms. These rooms not only house a collection of over 1,000 up-to-date and relevant medical text books but also offers reprographic services, computers and space for reading and studying. The library is in constant use and supports clinical staff from the hospital and students from four medical colleges in Gulu.

It is incredible to think that little over a year ago, none of this existed – Gulu Regional Referral Hospital’s library amounted to little more than a few shelves of out of date books.

In 2014, as part of a partnership with the Sheffield Heath and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust, a partnership with the aim of improving mental health support for people in both cities, the hospital had the opportunity to create a library. Book Aid International was delighted to support the new library by supplying the hospital with books. Julius Omara, a member of Gulu Hospital’s Record Management team, was tasked with setting up the new library and he provided us with a list of the types of books they needed. We picked and packed the books which most closely met their needs and sent a shipment of 1,000 books to Julius. The transformation just one year later is astounding.

 

Reader using library

 

When asked about the new library, this is what Dr. Nathan Onyachi, Gulu Regional Referral Hospital’s Director had this to say:

 

 

The development of the library doesn’t end there. Dr. Onyachi has approved the use of another room within the same complex that will almost double the size of the library and we are providing a grant to refurbish the whole space.

We will also be providing library management training for Julius and other Records Management staff to ensure that medical staff and students get the most out of the library and the books it contains. They will also receive training in promoting the library and the use of online medical databases.

 

We’re really pleased to report on these developments and look forward to seeing how the library continues to expand and grow.