23 November 2017

The Butabika East London Link scooped the prestigious International Health Partnership Award at the HSJ Awards in recognition of work in Uganda. The awards are the largest celebration of health excellence in UK, highlighting the most innovative and successful people and projects in the sector.

The Butabika-East London Link is a multi-disciplinary, institution-to-institution collaboration between East London NHS Foundation Trust and Butabika National Referral Hospital, Uganda. Formally operating since 2005, the partnership aims to better mental health in the UK and Uganda through mutual learning and collaboration.

The collaboration has been instrumental transforming mental health practices in Uganda with a focus on training and development, service user involvement and advocacy. The link has delivered numerous project over the past fourteen years, most notably introducing the first Child and Adolescent Training Programme in East Africa. Previously, children were treated in adult services with medication for adult psychiatric conditions, the programme introduced psychological and family treatments and in 2010 the Butabika Children Ward opened with two child psychiatrists, a ward manager and PCO who were trained in the UK.

Chief Executive of ELFT Dr Navina Evans said,
 ‘This award is a tribute to the passionate and dedicated staff that have been involved link over the past decade. Their work has significant impact on individual and families in Uganda and they have worked tirelessly, giving up their free time supporting Ugandan colleagues in their learning. They have also brought many lessons back to ELFT to improve how we do things'

Chair of the Butabika-East London Link, Dr Nick Bass said, “Our winner tonight is a partnership sustained over many years with high levels of service user engagement in both countries and represents the best of the NHS. This project has renewed its vision and ambition regularly and the judges felt that there were clear benefits identified for service users and stakeholders.”