University Students for a Good Cause University students following courses in different disciplines at the Institute of Health Care have joined forces to initiate an annual programme of extra-curricular activities focusing on health awareness.

This year, the students are organising a fund-raising campaign during the pre-Easter term in aid of the Life Cycle Organisation.  This organisation raises funds to increase dialysis facilities at the renal unit of St.Luke's Hospital and aims to enhance the quality of life of patients suffering from end-stage renal desease.  There are currently 120 patients receiving treatment at the Renal Unit.  These patients whose ages vary from 6 years to over 70 years totally depend on dialysis since their only alternative is to receive a transplant and this is a rare occurence.

Besides the use of a kidney machine, dialysis requires a specialised water treatment plant, Automated Peritoneal Dialysis machines, dialysis chairs and beds, air conditioning, specialised disposable items, specialised nurses and much more.  Treatment is very expensive costing some Lm10,000 per patient per year.  New technologies are introduced on a continuous basis and this requires extra funds.  It is for this reason that the IHC students have decided to organise a number of interesting fund-raising activities that are intended to involve other University students, staff and the general public.  As the health care professionals of the future, these students felt the need to contribute to such a worthy case and when approached by the Chairman of the Institute  of Health Care, Prof. J. Rizzo Naudi, they took up the challenge with great enthusiasm.  Activities will include the dissemination of health related information, a football league for staff and students and a lottery.  A Battle of the Bands and series of other fun activities are planned to take place during the summer holidays.

At a press conference at the Institute of Health Care, Prof. Rizzo Naudi,  IHC Chairman, Mr Anthony Bugeja, Nursing Officer at the Renal Unit  and transplant co-ordinator and the students appealed to members of the media and the general public to support this worthy cause.

The Institute of Health Care, University of Malta organises BSc (Hons) courses in Nursing, Physiotherapy, Communication Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Radiography, Environmental Health Science and Medical Laboratory Science, as well as Diploma courses and post-grad programmes.  Its Mission is 'to achieve excellence in the education and training of reflective, caring, accountable health professionals, in response to health and health service needs of the population'. The commitment shown by its students towards creating awareness for the needs of the community through the organisation of such fund-raising activities is a positive step towards fulfilling the mission of the Institute.

Funds may be deposited in the Life Cycle bank account numbers:
BOV 1481 452 1017
HSBC 614 256 486

29 March, 2000