This is an institutional link that involves several departments at the Norfolk and Norwich as well as the University of East Anglia (UEA).
The link was initiated from Gezira via THET and led to an inaugural meeting of interested staff in Norwich in 2005. Seedcorn funding was obtained from the BMA ‘humanitarian’ fund and from THET and the first needs assessment visit took place in 2006, when an MOU was also signed.
The initial 3-year activity plan covered nursing, community epidemiology and research, physiotherapy, neurology and ophthalmology (VISION 2020 Links Programme).
The programme has been running successfully over the past 4 years and to date there have been eight visits to Wad Medani involving 23 members of staff from the Norfolk and Norwich and UEA and eight visits back to Norwich involving 32 members of staff from Sudan.
The ophthalmology link is part of the VISION 2020 Links Programme; administered from the International Centre for Eye Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
We have been fortunate to have obtained generous funding from the Mo Ibrahim Foundation and latterly the Sudanese government, in recognition of the value of the link, has agreed to fund further exchange visits.
The focus of activity has moved towards the development of nursing practice, infection control and ophthalmology but there is significant activity around obstetrics and gynaecology and physiotherapy.
Mr Nick Astbury
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital NHS Trust
Tel: 01603 288374
Prof Osman Khalafalla Saeed
Professor of Medicine; Faculty of Medicine Wad Medani
The University of Gezira and Wadmedani Teaching Hospital
PO Box 20