Newsletter February 2017

Newsletter 7

Oosterbeek, Februari 2017

Cardiac surgery program

From November 28 to December 2, 2016 there was another  cardiac surgery program organised at the Kenyatta Hospital in Nairobi. Eleven patiënts had an operation including an urgent procedure for a baby with severe congenital heart discease, who should not have survived otherwise. Some children underwent additional tests, including a CT scan, which showed that there was no surgery indication at that moment. The operations were performed by the Italian surgeons Professor Michele, Dr. Federica and the Kenyan surgeons in training. Dr Paolo, the Italian anesthesist had an important contribution in the postoperative care.

Training of the local staff was continued. After surgery, most of the children were transfered to Ndugu Zangu for further recovery. We are grateful that no complications occurred, so most children could be go home after some weeks. This combination of an operation program and postoperative follow up in a centre with specific cardiac care is unique and works very well. We hope to organise another  operation program in April or May.

Cardiac aftercare and training

In April  this year I’m going back to Kenya for investigation of new patiënts and follow up of operated patiënts. Together  with Abdi, our echocardiographic  technician and organiser of the trip we will do follow up of operated patiënts on three different locations in Kenya. We will start in our “home” Ndugu Zangu where still many children stay, but also travel to Meru, near Mount Kenya and in Nairobi.

Hostel Flora in Nairobi, where we stay during  our surgery program, makes a fascility available where we can do our checks. Abdi and I will perform  the echoes, together and I look forward to hanging out with him a little longer. Last September Abdi was again trained in echocardiography for six weeks at the Moi Teaching Hospital in Eldoret. We received  a very positive statement about his training  from his supervisor. He was recommended  to do his echocardiography examination in 2017.


In recent times  our work is again supported by many people and agencies. A great experience was the charity action in favor of Heart for a Childsheart at  the Picasso College in Zoetermeer. Apart from a nice yield, attention was paid to the fact that health is not obvious and that there are countries where surgery for a heart problem is often not paid. Performances with singing and music, sale of home baked goods, nail polishes and many other activities ultimately resulted in a total of 2000 euros. A fantastic result.


We would like to thank all sponsors for their contribution, which ensures that we can continue our work for “Heart for a Childsheart”. When we look back on the year 2016, we are very excited and grateful about what took place. In particular, the fact that 21 children have undergone a necessary heart surgery. These children have been given by a new future.

Yours sincerely,  on behalf of the board,

Pieter Stolwijk, president.