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Sep 11, 2020

Bridging the Gap in Access to MCH & FP services

HopeCore's Nurse during HomeBased MCH visit.
HopeCore's Nurse during HomeBased MCH visit.

COVID 19 ASSESSMENT/ SCREENING

As a precautionary measure, Village HopeCore initiated a triaging tent at the entry of our apartment to conduct triaging and screening to all individual who intends to access the building. A clinical officer and one field officer are charged with the responsibility of conducting COVID 19 assessment, this includes taking travel history and measuring the temperature. For the period between June, July and August, we have screened 1651 individuals. Those who presented with conditions like running nose, sore throat, chest pain or any form of cough are treated at the tent. The screening has significantly helped to keep our staff and other occupants of the apartment safe.

COMMUNITY CLINIC

HopeCore’s Community clinic was reopened in May after being closed for around one month to strategize on how best we could provide services to our clients i.e. safe and placid environment that complies with the Ministry of Heath Set regulations on COVID 19.

1)Maternal Child Health services.

HopeCore MCH services at the clinic seek to promote the welfare of both mothers and children under five years. A total of 501 children and women have accessed free health services ranging from nutritional assessment, laboratory tests, Vitamin A supplementation, deworming and treatment of common diseases.

2)Antenatal Care(ANC) services

Village HopeCore’s Community Clinic provides free antenatal services to women in Mwimbi and Muthambi Sub-counties. ANC services link expectant women with the formal health system, increase the chance of using a skilled attendant at birth and contributes to good health through the life cycle. Good care during pregnancy is important for the health of the mother and the development of the unborn baby.  Inadequate care during this time breaks a critical link in the continuum of care and affects both woman and the unborn baby. Our clinic has provided ANC services to 38 mothers.

Unlike the public hospitals that charge Ksh 1500 -2000($15-20) for ANC profiling, HopeCore provides this essential service for free to the vulnerable women in our community.

3)Reproductive Health

Just like any other health rights in Kenya, women have the right to access reproductive health services in a timely and dignified manner/environment. HopeCore’s clinic promotes reproductive health for women in Mwimbi and Muthambi by providing free and voluntary family planning information and services. Since reopening, 167 women have accessed this family planning services ranging from depo injection, combined oral contraceptives and IUD insertion and removal. Family planning is an essential service that promotes both the health of mothers and their children.

4)Weekly cervical cancer screening  

We have also embarked to our weekly cervical cancer screening at the clinic. At the clinic, we conduct a comprehensive visual inspection of the cervix with Acetic Acid (VIA) and Lugol’s Iodine (VILI). WHO recommends that women of age between21 and 29 years should undergo screening at least once in every 3 years, unfortunately, very few women seek these services due to fear and ignorance. Since reopening in May, we have done cervical cancer screening to 45 women.

 

HOMEBASED MCH & FAMILY PLANNING PROGRAM.

The COVID 19 pandemic has led to a drastic decrease in demand for immunization services hence posing a high risk of children contracting measles and polio due to poor immunity. Village HopeCore redesigned its Maternal Child Health program to a Homebased Maternal Child Health and family planning program. In this new approach, we take MCH services to the community members at their homes rather than waiting for them to come out and seek the services from the already overstretched and equally under-resourced public health facilities.

Through the Homebased MCH & FP program, we have been able to offer free treatment of common conditions to 2471 children, 2450 children got Vitamin A supplementation and 2460 were dewormed. Our clinical team offered immunization referrals to 203 children under 5 years. During these visits, 94 expectant women were supplemented with iron/IFAS.

Jul 22, 2020

HopeCore at 20 Virtual Gala

Celebrating 20 years in twenties
Celebrating 20 years in twenties

With the COVID 19 pandemic, the MedTreks team shall not be able to make their second trip in August to Kenya for the usual outreach events, but the most importantly, Village HopeCoreInternational is Celebrating its 20th anniversary on 20th August and we would like to invite you to this virtual event.

HopeCore shall be celebrating 20 years of providing education, healthcare, skills training and business opportunities to thousands of people in Rural Mwimbi and Muthambi sub-counties. 

If you are able please buy a ticket or make a donation through:https://giving.villagehopecore.org/event/2020-hopecore-gala/e289994. You can also support us by sharing this information with your family members and friends. 

Thank you for being part of our family. 

Links:

May 14, 2020

HOPECORE'S RESPONSE TO COVID 19

A CHV training a family member COVID 19
A CHV training a family member COVID 19

HOPECORE IN COMBATTING COVID-19.

Amid the confirmation of COVID 19 In Kenya, the Government put in place response measures to prevent the spread of the Virus in the County. These measures included: suspending of learning in all learning institutions, request to employers to allow employees to work from home and reducing social gatherings. This made HopeCore to scale-down its programs to comply with the government directives and to ensure the safety of our staff and the communities that we serve. We embarked putting in place measures that would help create awareness on COVID-19 among the rural population in Tharaka Nithi County and helping the Government in combatting the pandemic.

COVID 19 Toolkit

Having a reliable and correct source of information is key to preventing panic and misinformation in a pandemic situation. Village HopeCore developed a comprehensive COVID-19 education toolkit that has COVID-19 information and updates from the World Health Organization (WHO) and Kenya Ministry of Health (MOH). This is a resource hub that provides correct information for clinicians and training resources for Community Health Workers/Volunteers.  HopeCore’s toolkit is among Segal Family Foundation’s COVID-19 resources shared globally.

 

Distribution of handwashing facilities

 In efforts to promote sanitation in the Community, Village HopeCore’s first response to COVID 19 was the distribution of handwashing tanks and soap to high traffic places. We have installed 11 handwashing stations to markets, police and bus stations, 28 handwashing tanks have been distributed to all the health facilities in Mwimbi and Muthambi sub-counties as requested by the Department of Health Services and Sanitation. Additionally, we trained 13 town council officials on COVID 19 and handwashing techniques, these officers partner with Community Health Volunteers to ensure that water and soap are available at the handwashing the station as well as educating members of the community on the importance of handwashing in the fight against COVID-19.

Training of Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) on COVID-19

Community Health Volunteers supplement the formal health systems in their communities, through door-door health education, that enhances disease prevention and cultivates health-seeking behaviour among community members. Village HopeCore developed a COVID -19 training Curriculum for Community Health Volunteers that was approved by the Tharaka Nithi County Department of Health Services and Sanitation to be used for CHVs COVID 19 training by all health partners.

As from March 2020 up-to-date, Village HopeCore has trained 698 CHVs across Tharaka Nithi County. The trained CHVs are COVID-19 community educators, in less than a month, the CHVs have conducted over 15,520 household visits in their respective Community Units (CUs) where they have educated over 81,120 individuals on COVID 19 and Handwashing. Through the CHVs intervention, there has been a total reduction in panic and misinformation on COVID 19. The communities have embraced social distancing, handwashing and use of facemasks to prevent the spread of the Corona Virus.

 

REOPENING OF HOPECORE CLINIC:

With all these interventions, there is still a gap in the provision of maternal and reproductive health services yet they are very essential in promoting women and children health. Based on the Global Citizen survey of April 2020 in Meru, immunization clinics are down by two-thirds while hospital delivery is down by over 50%. Through our CHVs network, we have learnt that routine nutritional assessment clinics where children are supplemented with Vitamin A and dewormed are not being done. Additionally, medical outpatient clinics that manage chronic conditions such as hypertension, diabetes and sickle cell disease in most government facilities were closed.

In the dispensaries, these patients are being referred to higher-level facilities which are far. This poses the risk of increased complications and fatalities. The main reason that has been cited by health care workers (HCWs) are lack of personal protective equipment (PPEs). The unprotected HCWs are therefore afraid of contracting COVID-19 from their patients or transmitting the disease to them in case they are already infected.

Village HopeCore would wish to address these challenges by creating access to health services through our Community Clinic in Chogoria. This would allow women and children to access free quality services i.e. treatment and laboratory services. We plan to reopen the clinic in mid-May 2020

However, before we reopen the clinic, we need to ensure the safety of our clients and that of HopeCore’s clinical staff. We have developed a strategy that defines and guides on how each patient shall be handled from triaging point outside the building where they shall be screened for COVID -19 symptoms i.e. fever, cough and shortness of breath. The patients shall then be coded before accessing further clinical services.  

There is a need for Personal Protective Equipment for the 12 clinical staff to enable them to attend to the clients safely at HopeCore’s Community Clinic. These items range from masks, face shield, gloves, infrared thermometers and hand sanitizers. The total cost for purchasing these items is $1600 and they shall be used in the clinic for 3 months as we continue assessing the situation concerning the pandemic.

Now more than never, our community needs us and we need your support as a partner to enable us to provide essential health services safely to our community.

HopeCore staff distributing soap to a market
HopeCore staff distributing soap to a market
 
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