Patient Ambassador Stories : Patuma
Patuma was married at the age of 16. She married young because she was an orphan and her grandmother who raised her could no longer afford to keep her in her household. Patuma dropped out of school and got married. Patuma was injured in 2016 during childbirth and lived with fistula for 4 months. She received treatment in September 2016 and was cured.
During her stay at the Fistula Care Centre in Malawi, Patuma acquired new knowledge from the health education, which she has gone on to teach to women in her community. She is also teaching at a nearby health centre, where she encourages women to be proactive and to make the right decision during their pregnancy as she does not want them to surfer the way she did. Patuma does not want such a problem to happen to any woman. Patuma also conducts community meetings together with the village headman who is in support of her mission of helping fistula patient have access to treatment.
So far Patuma has brought 18 patients to the Centre, all of whom have gone on to receive treatment and are now FREE from fistula. Patuma received a bicycle from the centre which she uses to reach patients that live in very difficult places to reach and where there is no road network. Patuma was trained in May 2016 as a patient ambassador and received all the training materials to use when raising awareness in her community.