Netcare Kingsway Hospital today expressed its great sorrow at the passing of Dr David Sengendo Sennoga. The well-loved paediatrician who practised at the hospital for more than 20 years fought tirelessly to help save lives in the battle against COVID-19, sadly succumbing to the illness himself on 4 February, a brave hero of the pandemic.
“As a local paediatrician, Dr Sennoga played an important role in the lives of so many families in our area and will be deeply missed by the community he served. Our most heartfelt condolences go to Dr Sennoga’s family at this most difficult time,” says Craig Murphy, regional director of Netcare’s coastal hospitals. “
Dr Sennoga is survived by his wife Christine, and their three children Fred, Christine and Catherine, and five grandchildren, Andrew, Kiahna, Hannah, Iris and Benjamin.
Having obtained his undergraduate degree in medicine at Makerere University Kampala in 1977, Dr Sennoga completed a Diploma in Tropical Medicine in 1986 and graduated from the University of Nairobi in 1988 with an MMed in Paediatrics. He qualified as a Fellow of the South African College of Paediatricians in 1996 after studying at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and also obtained a Diploma in Asthma Care (SA) in 2004. Dr Sennoga moved to South Africa in 1991, leaving his beloved Uganda behind to settle in Durban. He started a private practice at Netcare Kingsway Hospital in 1997.
“David’s life was like that of a great tree whose shade gave refuge to many, spanning across Africa from Uganda to South Africa,” relates Dr Basil Stathoulis, a specialist orthopaedic surgeon practising at Netcare Kingsway Hospital and friend of Dr Sennoga. “This tree of his life had two main branches: his career as a paediatrician and his life as patriarch of his family, friend to many, traveller and photographer.
“The outpouring of condolences from his many patients speaks volumes about the impact David had on those under his care. He was a skilled paediatrician but more than that, he was able to connect to his patients more deeply than most doctors. Some childhood patients even came to see him as adults, their trust in him remaining supreme. His patients received a perfect mix of medical skill and social narrative that helped them heal. His office staff were like family, and there is an emptiness now beyond those quiet walls.
Netcare Kingsway Hospital staff, management and doctors have expressed deep sadness at the passing of Dr Sennoga who was a friend to many of them.
“The nursing staff in the paediatric ward were all known to David by name and each would receive birthday wishes from him every year. He made a commitment to teach the nurses one medical fact each day, and they learnt diligently from a master paediatrician.
Hospital staff and management, and medical colleagues joined in Dr Sennoga’s memorial service through a private tribute at Netcare Kingsway Hospital on Wednesday, 10 February. The hearse stopped at the main entrance of the hospital where a guard of honour formed and a pastor said a short prayer. Over 300 small white flags made by hospital staff to honour the doctor’s life, were planted around his photograph and a choir from the hospital followed the procession.
Dr Sennoga was admitted to Netcare Kingsway Hospital on 23 December 2020 after taking ill, and was later transferred to the intensive care unit at Netcare uMhlanga Hospital. At the time, this was the nearest free ICU bed available.
Anna Demetriou, general manager of Netcare Kinsway Hospital offered her most sincere thanks to the staff, doctors and management at Netcare uMhlanga Hospital for providing such committed care to Dr Sennoga. “Daily updates were sent to Netcare Kingsway Hospital to keep anxious colleagues abreast of his progress. The Netcare family mourns the loss of Dr Sennoga, who will remain forever in our hearts. We thank him and his family for the invaluable impact his life had on us at the hospital and on the community,” she concluded.
Issued by: MNA on behalf of Netcare Kingsway Hospital
Contact: Martina Nicholson, Meggan Saville, Estene Lotriet-Vorster and Clementine Forsthofer
Telephone: (011) 469 3016
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