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Hamlin's Rehabilitation and Reintegration Program in 2021

“They are all precious to me. For every patient that comes to us we try to give them all the love, care and expertise that we have to help them to get better and back to a normal life."

- Dr Catherine Hamlin

Rehabilitation and reintegration in the 2021 program year

The team at Hamlin’s Rehabilitation and Reintegration Center, Desta Mender, continues to restore the health and dignity of women who have sustained severe or complex obstetric fistula injuries. Desta Mender embodies the Hamlin Model of Care, which is grounded in a fundamental respect for women with fistula injuries and a deep commitment to the provision of complete and compassionate care. Patients receive both physical and emotional rehabilitation during their stay, while accessing ongoing medical care for their injuries.

DestaImages2 1 | Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation (USA) | Working to eradicate obstetric fistula. Forever.

In addition, Desta Mender gives women the opportunity to take part in literacy and numeracy classes, life skills and vocational training, empowering them to be productive members of their communities when they return home. 1,052 patients enroled in training and education courses at Desta Mender and Hamlin's regional fistula hospitals in 2021 program year.

4 | Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation (USA) | Working to eradicate obstetric fistula. Forever.

After temporarily suspending programs due to COVID-19, Desta Mender reopened in September 2020. Desta Mender continues to provide rehabilitation and reintegration activities with appropriate protective measures taken to ensure the safety of both staff and patients. In January 2021, Hamlin launched the Women’s Empowerment Program, providing vocational and life skills training to former fistula patients, with 44 women participating in the first group.

54of60 desta mender | Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation (USA) | Working to eradicate obstetric fistula. Forever.

Physiotherapy services

Stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and physical rehabilitation form an essential part of Hamlin’s physiotherapy services for patients. SUI services include training and assessment of pelvic floor muscle, overflow incontinence management, measuring residual urine, bladder training, stiff catheter training, follow up including medication or treating infection, linking the patient to social work, finance and arranging transportation for discharge. During program year 2021, 760 patients have accessed these confidence-building services for periods from seven days to six months.

physio blog 3 | Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation (USA) | Working to eradicate obstetric fistula. Forever.

Thank you for supporting Hamlin’s Rehabilitation and Reintegration Program this year. To learn more about Hamlin's work in 2021, click here to read our Year in Review Newsletter.

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All rights reserved 2020 Catherine Hamlin Foundation (R) (ABN58159647499)
Catherine Hamlin Fistula Foundation is fiscally sponsored by KBFUS (EIN582277856) and KBF Canada (RCO769784893RR0001)

Photography credits to Cameron Bloom, Nigel Brennan, Mary F. Calvert, Kate Geraghty, Amber Hooper, Joni Kabana, Johannes Remling and Martha Tadesse.

Patient names and images have been changed to protect the identities of those we help.