Mamaope, Uganda’s Lifesaving Jacket
According to UNICEF, in Sub-Saharan Africa, pneumonia kills half a million children aged five and below every year; this accounts for half of all global deaths of children under five from pneumonia. But unlike HIV/AIDS and measles, pneumonia does not get the attention it needs to be prevented, managed, and treated. This despondent fact inspired a young Ugandan boy to become a beam of hope to thousands of kids who are left at the mercy of this disease, through the invention of a biochemical smart jacket, which detects pneumonia 3 to 4 times faster than the orthodox doctors’ detection. This life jacket, that will save thousands of children yearly, is called “Mamaope” or “Mother’s hope”, in tribute to the 27,000 Ugandan kids that lose their fight to Pneumonia yearly in Uganda.
After watching his friend’s grandmother suffer through the pains of pneumonia unknowingly, due to a misdiagnosis of her illness as malaria, which eventually killed her, Brian Turyabagye, a Ugandan graduate of Engineering found out the hard truth that his friend’s grandmother was just one of thousands who die yearly from pneumonia–their deaths largely caused by misdiagnosis.
“Many of those deaths are because of misdiagnosis. In the villages and remote areas, children get sick – and the first reaction is to treat them for malaria. Most people are aware of malaria, and the signs of malaria and pneumonia are very similar, so it is difficult for health professionals to differentiate,” says Brian Turyabagye.
- Health Care