Week 1 in Mbale District

This will be the end of my first work week at the Mbale district in Uganda. Working as an MPH officer at the District Health Office has been a blast already! First day on the job, we were invited to do an outbreak investigation on a possible cholera outbreak in the area. We travelled to the Namatala Village to investigate 2 possible cases of cholera at the cholera treatment center in the village. The next day we returned to do a formal investigation complete with an interview of the patients and a sweep of the water source and environmental exposures. In addition, Mbale is home to the Masaba tribe that borders Kenya. This coming year will be a big festival surrounding traditional male circumcision. I attended a meeting today to discuss the logistics surround the city wide celebration at the site of the first traditional circumcision. It was an eye opening experience, as this is a rite of passage for boys into manhood. It was great to see traditional customs echo safe public health practices–male circumcision helps reduce the incidence of HIV by 60%. I only have 2 more weeks in the Mbale district, so this weekend we will be hiking to Sipi Falls or possibly Mt. Elgon. Pics to come soon!

Yeego!

Cynthia Begay

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