On a dirt country road along a verdant hillside near Mpigi, Uganda, a cluster of brick and stone buildings nears completion between the broad banana trees on the terraced land. The Double Cure Medical Centre, its name emblazoned in bright red letters over the main entrance, is the latest project of Reverend David Serunjogi, also known by his Biblical passage name, “Romans 8:1”, and was opened to the Mpigi community with great fanfare December 3, 2007.

Serunjogi, an Episcopal minister, and his wife Sarah, have spent the last twenty years developing among their “Romans 8:1 Ministries” the primary Trinity School in Kabowa (a neighborhood of Kampala), the secondary Centenary School in Nyendo (nearby, in the Serunjogi’s home district, Masaka), and most recently the busy maize and rice mill just down the road and around the corner from the Double Cure. Now their attention has broadened from education and commerce to the health of their flock; and as the name reflects, it is both their physical and spiritual health they hope to nurture.

Ugandans suffer enormously from the triple infectious scourge of HIV/AIDS, malaria, and tuberculosis, while little maternal care exists, and childhood diseases continue to flourish in the absence of fundamental nutrition and immunization. The Double Cure Medical Centre, when completed, will be a thirty-bed general medical centre treating obstetric, gynecologic, surgical, orthopedic, general medical, pediatric, and trauma patients. It is anticipated that physicians and nurses in its clinic will see between 350 and 400 outpatients each week, while there will be inpatient wards with 10 beds designated for children, 10 for female/maternal adults, and 10 for male adults. Rev. Serunjogi describes its mission as, “to bring affordable services to the needy people in this area and improve the scarcity of health facilities in the district.” In addition to the clinic rising in Mpigi, the Centre will operate a mobile unit to bring medical care to the bedridden and home bound, and to deliver comprehensive public health educational programs directly to nearby villages. As in the Romans 8:1 Ministries’ schools, people of all faiths and tribes will be welcomed.

Having demonstrated over more than two decades their extraordinary devotion to the educational and spiritual growth of the people of their community, Rev. David Serunjogi and Sarah Serunjogi look forward to linking those efforts to the medical needs of their charges. With assistance from many sources, including ECHOES Around the World, the Double Cure Medical Centre is on its way to becoming a vital resource for the Mpigi people.

Joseph Bonn, M.D. ¨The Lankenau Hospital, Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, January, 2008

 

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