In not more than twelve PowerPoint slides, present how a lay man can understand antimicrobial resistance. State how the threat can be combated.
The Students’ Consortium for Public Health Challenges (SCPHC) together with Makerere University Biomedical Laboratory Students Association (MUBLTSA), College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity (COVAB) held a Student’s Public Health Challenge based on the theme, “Antimicrobial Resistance Stewardship.”
The purpose of the challenge was to provide a platform to all students from multiple disciplines to engage in increasing awareness on crucial public health problems and actively involve them in solving health threats like infectious diseases, antimicrobial resistance, Zoonotic diseases, and nutrition.
The consortium focuses on the engagement of ordinary citizens in understanding basic scientific research and enable them realize their role in ending public health threats. The consortium has well-established plans and strategies to enable it achieve the set goals. Such strategies include organizing public health challenges for tertiary institutions, primary and secondary school outreaches, agricultural trade exhibitions, organizing for the commemoration of national and global days/weeks for the different health events, organizing trainings for village health workers and use of social media platforms. This is to increase awareness about the several life-threatening conditions typically neglected.
The Guest of Honor at the challenge was Head Emergency Operations Center- Ministry of Health, Dr. Issa Makumbi.
The key note address was given by the Project Manager Global Health Security Engagement, Dr. Richard Walyema who was represented by Dr. Kizito from Infectious Diseases Institute (I.D.I).
Participants were students from Bugema University, Katikamu Senior Secondary School, Vic View Primary School, Kampala International University- Bushenyi Campus, Mbarara University of Science and Technology, International Health Science University and Kyambogo University.
Ten different disciplines participated, including;
Biomedical Laboratory Technology, Bachelors in Veterinary Medicine, BSc Human Nutrition, BSc in Food Science and Technology, BSc Medicine and Surgery, BSc Nursing, BSc Animal Production, BSc Biomedical Sciences, BSc biochemistry, Bachelors of Science Technology-Biology. In total, 160 students attended the challenge.
The students’ challenge was a cocktail of presentation formats; all intended to convince the judges that the architects of these activities, had the best in terms of considering information consumption behaviours. Fifteen (15) students delivered PowerPoint presentations on Antimicrobial Resistance; a primary school pupil -Byanso Joshua- recited a poem on hand- washing as a way of disease prevention; Bugema University students presented a drama skit on the ‘Effects of Antimicrobial Resistance on the Family’; Katikamu Senior Secondary School recited a poem on Antimicrobial Resistance.
The challenge was to determine participants who presented information on Antimicrobial Resistance that can easily be understood by an ordinary citizen.
Contestants in the challenge were also awarded certificates of merit.
The Adjudicator of the challenge, Dr. Jessica Nakavuma, made a few remarks on the quality of the presentations in their various formats. Winning teams received awards.
Prof. Clovice Kankya (Makerere University College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity) stressed the need for increasing public awareness on public health concerns through more interactive programs similar to SCPHC’s AMR challenges and urged the students to actively participate and be innovative in future events.
Technical and financial support for the challenge was provided by Global Health Security Engagement Project at Infectious Diseases Institute, OHCEA-Uganda Office, Uganda National Council of Science and Technology, Dr. Edward Wampade, Dr. Gabriel Tumwine, Dr. Jessica Nakavuma, Ms. Jacinta Nakaye, Ms. Peggy Nakalema, Dean Frank Mwiine (School of Biosecurity, Biotechnical and Laboratory Sciences (SBLS).