Q3/2012: Health through Mobile Outreach
January 24, 2013
Julie Lankford and Jonathan White
RMF’s Mobile Clinic in Mozambique is a new model of health care provision for our organization, conceptualized to reach remote and rural communities with no prior access to health care. Since its inception in 2008 our Mobile Clinic has been hugely successful and remains the only mobile clinic in all of Mozambique. The clinic, a collaboration between RMF, Vanderbilt University’s Friends in Global Health and Medical Mission International, is currently deployed in one of the most populous provinces of Mozambique, Zambézia Province, located in the central coastal region with a population of almost 4 million.
Summary of RMF/MMI-sponsored activities carried out during the reporting period under each project objective:
During the third quarter, we continued to implement the strategy developed and presented in January 2012, serving the localities of Malei and Mexixine according to a bi-weekly schedule. Main activities include:
1. Provision of primary health services to the populations of Malei and Mexixine.
2. To provide HIV diagnosis, care and treatment services, including integrated services for TB/HIV co-infected patients.
3. To provide ANC and PMTCT services to pregnant women.
4. To provide care and early infant diagnosis services to children born to HIV-positive women.
5. To provide TB diagnosis, care and treatment services.
6. Expansion of the above HIV and other primary care services through the mobile clinic are a result of funding from both RMF/MMI and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Global AIDS Program (PEPFAR).
Number served/number of direct project beneficiaries:
A total of 2,662 patients benefited directly from RMF/MMI sponsored mobile clinic operations and 6,034 patients were reached indirectly through other staff outreach activities happening in parallel.
As told by patient:
My wife had been sick for many months. We did not know what was causing her illness, so we sought the guidance of a traditional healer in our village. After spending a substantial amount of our income on meetings and ceremonies with the traditional healer that were intended to evoke the spirit, but that showed no results, we were in despair. At that time, we happened to see a community lecture being given just outside of the mobile clinic in Mexixine where the staff was discussing the importance of HIV-AIDS counseling and testing. After listening to the lecture and thinking about the information for some time, we decided to get tested on May 17, 2012. The test results were positive and my wife was in need of antiretroviral therapy immediately.
Four months after initiating the antiretroviral therapy, we were able to witness significant improvements in my wife’s health condition. My own health condition also improved a lot when compared to the period prior to the ARV therapy sessions. We praise and thank the Mobile Clinic intervention for its great initiative, because through communications in the community, it brought us information about HIV-AIDS, as well as the guarantee of local testing and follow-up.
We hope to see the expansion of the Mobile Clinic activities and services in the communities around Mexixine Health Facility as many other people may be undergoing similar hardship due to lack of information in their community.