Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities

by Reach Out NGO
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Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Provide healthcare to remote displaced communities
Dr
Dr

This project has been featured in the Effective Altruism Forum, if you want to get more technical information about the project, this is the link. Highlights of their analysis are: 1,322 life threatening conditions treated in 6 months, 74,7% of patients have no other option of healthcare. The project has provided between 13,220 and 36,089 "Quality-Adjusted Life-Years", a measure that considers both the quality and the quantity of life lived after a succesful medical intervention.

 

Ben (19) lives in Ossing, a village in Manyu Division, South-West Region of Cameroon.

He was born with diabetes, his father has a disability, and all his life his family had to beg other villagers to pay for his injectable treatment.

In 2018, when the armed conflict started all over Manyu, the population of the village became displaced, impoverished, and at risk. Nobody was wealthy enough to keep helping Ben.

Ben had no means, and also had an extreme urge to eat, probably made worse by his untreated diabetes. He started begging for food in the village and spent most of his time begging.

One day, he could not get anyone to help him, but he was extremely hungry (More than 2 years without medication, his blood sugar levels were worse than ever, alongside other symptoms). He found himself wandering in the market, with a pot of cooked rice from a local restaurant in front of him.

He could not control himself and stole some food as fast as possible.

He got caught, was called a thief, and cursed by the village. 

Our medical team met Ben 5 months ago, looking pale, extremely hungry and tired, with abnormal blood sugar levels. We began following him up weekly and supplying him with constant medication. He regained his strength, and the doctor also helped him apply for one of our social support programs.

Our team also referred him to our protection services, and his family received some urgent economic support.

Sadly, the success story of Ben might get stopped in its tracks now. Our Emergency funding from the World Health Organisation runs until the end of September, and Ben and the 5,500 persons who receive temporary or regular treatment from them will no longer have access to proximity healthcare this October.

Ossing does not have a health center that can provide diabetes treatment, and he cannot afford to travel regularly to the nearest health facility in Mamfe. He is at risk of defaulting from treatment this October.

We are urgently raising funds to keep the clinic of Manyu working because it is one of the largest and most in need areas. We also want to keep the one in Batibo, the area most affected by violence.

Please, help us with what you can, every 8,000 $ is one more month with 2 clinics.

From Monday 14th to Friday 18th, any donation of 50 dollars or less will be matched by 50%, any donation bigger than that will have a bonus of 25$, and any sign up for a monthly donation will have a 100% bonus, up to 200$ on that donation (this will be received 4 months after signing up)

 

P.D: We can't share pictures of Ben, these are some pictures of the clinics in action.

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Dear donors,

Cameroon has 12,000 confirmed cases, and the South-West 503, and 29 deaths, mostly concentrated in two cities, Buea and Limbe. Although the virus has evolved more slowly than in other places, its growth is accelerating, and there are very little resources to face this crisis.  We asked ourselves what could we do to support with the little we have, and we got feedback from the treatment center responsible for caring for most of the identified cases.

The problem is that we can only test 25 samples at once, it is an expensive procedure and we can't test less than that. So sometimes we wait for some time until we have the 25 samples. But we only have 2 carriers. So we take time from one place to the other carrying samples before we put 25 together and it delays the whole process.

And often they won't even isolate until they get those results, so this small thing is slowing the response and putting everyone at risk. So we need more flasks... just plastic boxes, like food flasks, that would do.

Another problem: we don't have enough clothes. So we have our scrubs to move around the treatment unit, and these are not supposed to leave the center. Now if I want to go to collect a sample I have to go to a different aisle of the hospital. I can go with my own clothes, exposing myself and my family to infection, or with my scrubs, exposing everyone else to infection. So we actually need more scrubs, to change them when we go to collect samples or do any other interaction in the hospital.

Two weeks ago, Reach Out donated 300 gloves, 150 surgical masks, 5  pairs of scrubs, 5 pairs of rubber shoes, 1 hand-washing station, 5 coolers and 8 flasks to the treatment center. We thank you for your support.

"If I don't have the right thing. I refuse to work. I won't put my staff at risk. I have to collect samples right from the persons' throat, I can't gamble. If I get sick who will take my place? We have very limited stuff. If I don't have I will stop working until I get it.

 How is it to fight COVID-19 in South-West Cameroon, in the middle of a civil war, and with so much disinformation? 

There is so much stigma, even in the hospital, there are doctors and nurses that avoid me. That's not very clever because my wife works at pediatrics, they should also be afraid of her. We have better protection than anybody else, and we follow strict measures, unlike everyone else in the hospital.

And there are so many rumours! People think that we have money because of corona, that the government is paying us per case. So far,  my salary has not changed since this thing started. 

What worries me the most is that people are avoiding all hospitals, and second, they are avoiding the government hospitals. The corridors are now empty. That is extremely dangerous. People are neglecting their diseases because of the fear of forced quarantine, which is a myth. I have not seen any case of tuberculosis in a couple of months. We used to always have at least some, we have not eradicated it. Someone is there, not treating a potentially mortal disease, because of fear of corona.

We need to continue fighting stigma.  I was so honoured to be invited to talk at a church last Sunday, we need more churches that engage in the COVID-19 sensitization. When people cannot trust information from the government they will turn to their church, and some churches are trying to help but are making it worse. I was so happy seeing that a church can invite a doctor to give their congregation the facts. 

This comment spurred the idea for our next activity - engaging 30 faith leaders with COVID-19 training, starting next week.

 

Thank you for supporting this project.

 

Other activities carried out on COVID:

 

Contact Tracing in 4 districts

Training of 40 humanitarian organizations

Support to 7 rural health centers with PPE

Awareness campaigns touching more than 100,000 persons so far

 

Other activities planned:

 

Donation of more PPE for health facilities

Direct Support to COVID-19 affected families

Capacity building for faith leaders, school principles, and journalists on COVID-19

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On the 31stof March, I received call from Roland, the Community Health Worker in Bafaka, about a disease that had caused fever, headache, and loss of consciousness and had affected 3 children already. The mobile team after some questions agreed it was probably meningitis. However, to confirm this, fluid from the spine needed to be collected and tested. Our biggest fear was that it could be meningococcal meningitis, which is epidemic meningitis able to spread from one child to another and has a very high mortality rate. The mobile team left for Bafaka use one day to travel across the forest and hills. On arriving Bafaka, we explained to the community the reason of our trip. The people quickly refused they had no meningitis in their community.

It was later on discovered that they feared the disease because it had killed many of children before about a decade ago. The mobile health team assessed all the children in question. The required samples were collected from the spinal cord and the sick children taken to the hospital along with the samples. It was confirmed it was bacterial meningitis but thank God not the contagious type. The children were treated at the Ekondo titi District Hospital.

It’s been quite a challenging period for the Community Health Workers going through the communities of Funge, Masore, Kitta, Lobe Estate, Njenku, Ngolo Metokor, and Lipenja to identify, treat and refer basic illnesses. For the past months it has beenfilled with a lot of insecurity and fears due to both clashes between armed groups and the military and also the spreading fear of COVID-19.

Also during this month 23,284 people (10,437 males and 12,847 females) were educated by the team of Community Health Workers on hygiene management. A total of 1,444 mothers and or careers of mothers with young children between the ages of 0-23 months were reached with counselling on Infant and Young Child Feeding by Community health workers, 1,937 children (989 males and 948 females) were screened for malnutrition using MUAC and out of these, 2children (2 males) were diagnosed with Severe Acute Malnutrition and are being treated with Ready to Use Therapeutic Food. 5 children (2 males and 3 females) were diagnosed with Moderate Acute Malnutrition.

Also 272 children (121 males and 151 females) children were received treatment for diarrhoea, 304 children (149 males and 155 females received treatment for Acute Respiratory Infection). Meanwhile 1201 people (548 males and 653 females) received anti-malaria medications. In addition, 13,971 people (6,514 males and 7,457 females) were educated on various health prevention topics including, malaria, diarrhea prevention, causes and prevention of ARI in children.

This is the last month when we will be able to operate at this scale. If we do not receive donations or a project extension through other donors, we will have to suspend pay for all these community health workers. These activities will stop, as well as the active surveillance that allowed us to identify and test possible cases of meningitis. This is why we ask your urgent support.

 Note: Pictures are from before March 2020, currently all our health staff and community health workers wear masks and use COVID-19 protocols. 

Ekondo-Titi Sub-Division / Bafaka
Ekondo-Titi Sub-Division / Bafaka

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Organization Information

Reach Out NGO

Location: Buea, South West Region - Cameroon
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @reachoutdev1
Project Leader:
Njomo Omam Esther
Executive Director
Buea, South West Region Cameroon
$10,821 raised of $12,385 goal
 
194 donations
$1,564 to go
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