By Alana Williams
This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 11 of VARSITY News.
The UCT Surgical Society Scrub Run involves a group of health sciences students, doctors and passionate individuals who run in their scrubs to raise funds for Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital through the Children’s Hospital Trust. This year, 100% of the proceeds will go towards the upgrade and expansion of the Emergency Centre. This project is vital as this is the only dedicated paediatric emergency centre in Southern Africa and operates 24/7. 45 000 patients are assisted annually and receive lifesaving and essential medical, surgical, nursing and emergency care.
However, presently there are some challenges. There is not enough space to adequately treat all patients or separate patients with infectious and non-infectious diseases. In addition, there is some additional equipment required. With these funds, many important improvements will be made such as an upgraded resuscitation area and more consultation rooms. The centre will also include a burns treatment room, a calming room and safe spaces for victims of violence. Importantly, there will be two isolation cubicles and decontamination rooms which is important given the added challenges of COVID-19.
We feel truly passionate about this cause for so many reasons. Emergency care is the first step in ensuring that children are healthy and safe. Critically ill patients are seen here, and the staff are dedicated to giving them the best chance at recovery. We also feel that this is a great opportunity to support the healthcare workers at Red Cross who provide excellent care to patients and their families. Additionally, in the context of COVID-19, we have seen why having access to timely medical care is vital for preserving and maintaining health. We feel passionate about preserving the health of these paediatric patients. Being in hospital is a scary experience for any child and this project will go a long way to ensuring children are treated in safe, child-friendly spaces.
This year has been challenging however, lockdown regulations have encouraged us to become more creative with our planning of this event. Usually we run as part of the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon which takes place in Greenpoint. However, this year we are hosting a virtual event. We are really excited about this because it means more people from various parts of the country can get involved. Runners can also decide on their own route. We also have expanded and given 5km and 10km options so that anyone can participate no matter their level of fitness. The run will be tracked using the official marathon App. We are also encouraging our Scrub Runners to use virtual running apps to plan their routes and training leading up to the event.
We are encouraging all members of the campus community to participate. You do not have to be a health sciences student to take part. The Scrub Run is also open to anyone and everyone who would like to be involved and participate in this incredible event! The more people involved and supporting this cause, the greater the impact we can have. If anyone would like to get involved, we encourage you to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will provide you with more information to join the Scrub Run. You can also visit our Instagram page @uctsurgsoc to keep up to date with our campaign.
Donations are a huge part of this initiative and every contribution makes a massive impact to this cause. In order to make a donation, visit our GivenGain platform and click on the donate button. Every contribution made makes a huge difference and will go a long way in helping more children get essential, quality medical care. We would like to thank everyone who has supported our cause this far and hope you will participate in the event.