Cheerful Hearts Foundation in collaboration with its partner, Anidaso Health, USA undertook a three day free health screening in three selected communities in the Awutu Senya District of Ghana namely, Gomoa Nyanyano, Senya Beraku and Akufful Krodua on the 26th 27th and 28th March respectively.
This exercise was aimed at helping the deprived rural communities to access free health care, know their health status and to educate them on any health related issues they need to be aware of. Prior to this screening we realized that there are lot of people in these remote communities both children and adults with diverse health issues but do not have any knowledge about their health condition hence do not see the need to seek medical attention. The situation is attributed to poverty, cultural beliefs and lack of health education among others.
In each community, one hundred and fifty people with various health issues were screened and some school children dewormed. Prevalent among the various health issues identified were, high blood pressure, diabetes, skin diseases both in children and adults, eye problems both in children and adults, chronic cough, untreated wounds, diarrhea and malnutrition in children.
.The screening team gave treatment to patients where necessary and people with serious health issues were referred to the nearest health centers. In the Akufful Krodua community, majority of the people screened including the children, have issues with stomach pain and diarrhea which is attributed to their source of drinking water. We discovered that their source of drinking water is a pond of water oozing from the ground which is believed to be coming from a nearby mountain. The people drink directly from this water without boiling or treating it hence the many issues they have with stomach pain and diarrhea.
The people were educated on how to treat the water before drinking especially when giving it to children to prevent getting diseases that may be associated unclean water. The team also donated one water filtering machine to the community that can be used to filter the water.
Though one filtering machine is not enough to serve the whole community, we believe it will go a long way to help them while we look into other means of ensuring that the community have access to portable drinking water. In demonstrating how to use the machine and how useful it is, water from the stream which is brownish in colour was used and after going through the filtering process it came out very clean (colourless) and safe for drinking.
The people were thankful for this kind gesture which was donated by our partner Anidaso Health. Subsequent follow ups will be made to ensure that the machine is put to good use and beneficial to the community.
In all, a minimum of four hundred and fifty (450) people have been screened and many more educated on various health issues. The team worked with some nurses from the Ghana Health Service to ensure subsequent follow ups on people with serious health issues in the communities. One of such cases that Cheerful Hearts will ensure is followed up is a family with seven (7) children aged 1-11 out of which five are malnourished. All seven children were delivered at home and have never had any antenatal care. Both parents are farmers and uneducated hence do not have any idea about the health condition of their children. Three of the children were brought to the screening centre for screening it was then discovered that they are malnourished.
A section of the team went with then malnourished children to know their house for purposes of subsequent interventions. Upon getting to the house we realized there are four more children all of who needed critical medical attention. Their parents also need to be educated on some basic health tips. Some drugs were prescribed for the children and the parents were given money to buy the drugs for the children and bring them to the Kasoa hospital for further nutritional care.
We are currently following up with this family to ensure that these children are well taken care of and the parents given the necessary education to ensure a healthy family.
We are grateful to our partners, Anidaso Health, USA, the Ghana Health Service, Community leaders, and all and sundry who played a role in this screening exercise. It is our desire to bring health to the door steps of the people in our deprived communities, it takes a collective effort and you can help us achieve this wherever you may be. Contact us via email email@example.com or call us +233 26 262 6182 / +233 26 222 2399 / for more information on how you can be of help in this cause.