Back from the AFLAR Nairobi Rheumatology Updates. Hard work, but enjoyable and successful. I presented my “Foot Problems in Arthritis” talk to the Allied Health Professional’s Workshop and the formal Regional Rheumatology Symposium.
An ‘on safari’ report was intended, but my laptop was attacked by Trojan Horse and worm viruses, after picking them up from the generic computer we used for the workshop. Fortunately the IT expert at my hotel was able to clean the flash drive and I just shut the computer down. Now all is clean and healthy again.
The big ‘take home ‘ message of the workshop was the need for team work in assessing and managing the effects of arthritis in any form.
The interaction between the physiotherapist, occupational therapist, rheumatology specialist nurse, podiatrist and rheumatologist; plus all the other health professionals, was highlighted by the team that came to Nairobi from Glasgow.
Their big message was that the centre of focus must always remain the patient. They also showed how their individual professions have developed extended scopes of practice to enable a massive reduction in waiting lists in Scotland, due to the screening interventions that they are allowed to do.
Despite the apparent skills shortage in Kenya – there is only one rheumatologist in the whole country – there are many skilled and enthusiastic allied health professionals plus other doctors such as GP’s, physicians and orthopaedic surgeons interested in getting involved with managing arthritis. I met many of them during the week.
Additional talks were on ‘Arthritis, feet and podiatry’ and ‘Footwear for problem feet’. In the practical sessions, delegates were shown how to make a basic insole and use padding onto the foot and into the shoe. More on this another time.
Oh yes. Traffic. I will never complain about Johannesburg traffic jams or driving again. The rush hours are gridlock in extremis; unbelievable.
Thank you AFLAR for the invitation and Roche Pharmaceuticals for the financial assistance.