Position Papers
Corinna Wallrapp and Heiko Faust
World Transport Policy & Practice Vol 14 No 2, Eco-Logica (UK)
Published in
Submitted by
Corinna Wallrapp and Heiko Faust
Related theme(s)
Urban Mobility
Africa (AFR)

Bicycle Ambulances in rural Uganda: Analysis of factors influencing its usage

Since 1997 about 400 bicycle ambulances were distributed to villages in rural Uganda to improve their accessibility of health centres. For general understanding, a bicycle ambulance is a bicycle with an attached trailer especially to transport seriously sick patients to the nearest health centre. This paper presents the main results of a study carried out to analyse the usage of the bicycle ambulances in Uganda. The research was undertaken mainly through guided interviews with receivers and the distributors of bicycle ambulances in selected villages. In referring to the technology, the bicycle ambulance can be described as an appropriate technology within the circumstances. However, factors were defined influencing its usage, such as the situation in the villages, the features of the bicycle ambulance, the system of distribution and the organisation of the groups. The only significant influence on the frequency of usage could be observed between the different organisational structures of the bicycle ambulance groups. Furthermore, high distances, costs of repairs and other barriers could be overcome through the positive attitude of group members.