Clinical Orthopaedics and Related Research

, Volume 466, Issue 10, pp 2317–2322

Musculoskeletal Trauma Services in Uganda

Symposium: ABJS/C.T. Brighton Workshop on Trauma in the Developing World

DOI: 10.1007/s11999-008-0369-2

Cite this article as:
Naddumba, E.K. Clin Orthop Relat Res (2008) 466: 2317. doi:10.1007/s11999-008-0369-2


Approximately 2000 lives are lost in Uganda annually through road traffic accidents. In Kampala, they account for 39% of all injuries, primarily in males aged 16–44 years. They are a result of rapid motorization and urbanization in a country with a poor economy. Uganda’s population is an estimated 28 million with a growth rate of 3.4% per year. Motorcycles and omnibuses, the main taxi vehicles, are the primary contributors to the accidents. Poor roads and drivers compound the situation. Twenty-three orthopaedic surgeons (one for every 1,300,000 people) provide specialist services that are available only at three regional hospitals and the National Referral Hospital in Kampala. The majority of musculoskeletal injuries are managed nonoperatively by 200 orthopaedic officers distributed at the district, regional and national referral hospitals. Because of the poor economy, 9% of the national budget is allocated to the health sector. Patients with musculoskeletal injuries in Uganda frequently fail to receive immediate care due to inadequate resources and most are treated by traditional bonesetters. Neglected injuries typically result in poor outcomes. Possible solutions include a public health approach for prevention of road traffic injuries, training of adequate human resources, and infrastructure development.

Copyright information

© The Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of OrthopedicsMulago HospitalKampalaUganda

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