Physics students of Kabojja International School were hosted in a study tour of the International Hospital Kampala (IHK) Radiology Department, on 13 February 2018. The students sought to acquire practical knowledge regarding the operation of radiology equipment, in tandem with the requirements of their syllabus.
Dr. Annet Kugonza Khingi, the Head of the IHK Radiology department said, “It is good for students to come and see practically, what they learn in class, because then they are able to comprehend and appreciate better the various fields of medicine. “Students need to holistically understand medicine, including the diagnostics,” Dr. Khingi added.
Radiology is key in healthcare because it supports evidence based medical practice and its demand is increasing globally. It is an investigative field of medicine that enables medics to view the inside of the human body by use of different equipment. A lot of physics is applied in the operation of this equipment.
Dr. Annet demonstrated the functions of: the ultrasound scan, X-ray, mammogram and Computed Tomography (CT) scan.
All these techniques are used to investigate various conditions of the body to come up with a diagnosis which helps the doctors to confidently manage the patients, using the evidence provided. Right choices of treatment are selected to suit the conditions of the patients.
Although there are concerns regarding risks of radiation especially from plain radiography, CT, mammography and other radiating investigative methods, Radiology workers are equipped with knowledge of safe practice while carrying out the procedures.
Radiation safety is key and it is the responsibility of radiation workers to protect the patients, the environment and themselves. For any of the investigations to be carried out, there must be an indication that justifies the examination. During the procedures, safety measures like use of protective wear and other devices are put in place. Education, through warning signs and critical questions are relayed to our clients. The equipment is also periodically checked as part of quality assurance to ensure that the practice is safe.
Charles Sabiiti, a Physics Instructor at Kabojja, said, “The tour exclusively addressed the syllabus needs which requires students to know about the techniques. I have no doubt that what they have learnt at the hospital, combined with what they learnt in the classroom, will make a make difference.”
Harry Igulu, one of the year 3 students said, “This experience has broken down the classroom boredom and exposed us to practical learning. I am motivated. When I become an engineer, I will borrow from such experiences to contribute towards addressing some medical equipment challenges, e.g the effects of radiation,” he added.