In July 2016, a delegation representing key institutions in the City of Zurich’s health system traveled to Kampala for a three-day exchange with local health specialists. Dr. Claudia Nielsen, Zurich’s city councilor for health and environment, was accompanied by Prof. Rainer Weber, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Zurich, Dr. Yasmine Inauen and Dr. Sara Elmer from the University of Zurich’s International Relations Office, and Dr. Jan Fehr.
Dr. Nielsen had the opportunity to visit an outpatient clinic in order to get a better understanding of the challenges local health care providers face, but also to learn about the approaches they developed to manage such problems. She met her counterpart of the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA), Dr. David Serukka, and discussed different approaches to shared health problems in the Global North and South. On this occasion, she also met the Mayor of Kampala, Erias Lukwago. Dr. Nielsen had several meetings at the College of Health Sciences at Makerere University to learn more about the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI). The last day of the visit focused on the collaboration in veterinary medicine between Makerere University and the respective team from the University of Zurich, led by Prof. Paul Torgerson. Several projects about the interaction of humans, animals, and the environment were presented to illustrate the ‚One Health’ approach followed by the Swiss and Ugandan partners.
In summary, this first exchange on the city-level, and the interaction of city representatives with key players in the R4GH collaboration, was very productive. Hopefully this is the beginning of a new line of partnership in the spirit of R4GH – building on, and strengthening the existing collaboration.