The biggest disease today is not leprosy or tuberculosis, but rather the feeling of being unwanted, uncared for, and rejected by everybody.
Access to hospitals was difficult for leprosy affected persons, both logistically and due to social stigma. Rising Star Outreach responded to this problem with the initiation of a Mobile Medical Unit.
The Medical Program with the Mobile Clinic as the mainstay was introduced in 2005 to serve 7 Leprosy Colonies in the vicinity of the Rising Star Outreach of India campus located at Thotanaval Village, Uthiramerur Taluk, Kanchipuram District, Tamil Nadu, India.
The Mobile clinic is manned by a well qualified Medical Officer supported by nurses and health assistants. The unit travels to the colonies and provides leprosy screening, medicines, wound and ulcer care, physiotherapy, counselling, eye care, health education and medical treatment for non-leprosy related ailments.
- 13 Regular Colonies with a population of 1600 people
- 10 Extension Colonies with a total population of 1010 people
- 16 State Colonies across the state of Tamil Nadu by distributing Medical Supplies
Rising Star Outreach of India through the Mobile Medical Units focuses on alleviating the great suffering of leprosy affected persons with the following 10 operational strategies.
- Home area visits by mobile medical unit van to provide primary care
- Health education [especially on self-care as well as personal and general hygiene]
- Distribution of protective devices
- Distribution of assistive devices
- Dispatch of medical supplies across the state
- Distribution of nutrition/vitamin/mineral supplements
- Data collection
- The mobile clinic provides regular cyclical primary health care in a very organized manner with medical consultation, nursing support, eye care, physiotherapy and counseling services, would care with the delivery of quality medical supplies at their doorstep once in every 2 weeks that lasts until the next visit.
- These visits are helpful in the treatment of minor illnesses, acute injuries, infectious diseases, and other ailments from which the patients and their families benefit RIGHT AT THEIR DOORSTEP IN A TIMELY MANNER.
- These visits are also very helpful to patients with chronic illnesses like diabetes mellitus, systemic hypertension, coronary diseases, arthritis, chronic bronchitis, and asthma because the patients and their family members receive an uninterrupted supply of medications and medical monitoring which keep their health problems in control thereby improving lives in a qualitative and quantitative manner.
- Health education about wound care, personal and environmental hygiene, and leprosy are made with the help of short video clips in the colonies using projector/screen methods.
- Protective devices like MCR shoes and dark glasses, as well as Assistive devices like walking sticks, tricycles, walkers, wheel chairs, crutches, grip aids, braces, splints, artificial limbs and other prosthetic items.
- Secondary and Tertiary medical services are provided by referral hospitals like Sri Ramachandra Medical College Hospital, SRM Medical College Hospital, Karpaga Vinayagar Medical College Hospital and other well known referral hospitals in the vicinity of the patient’s residence. We have helped these patients with successful cataract surgeries, amputations, dialysis support, reconstructive surgeries, various specialist consultations, and medical/surgical procedures
- We also send Medical Supplies to the Colony at Villivaakam, Chennai from where it is distributed to 13 colonies across the state of Tamil Nadu. Medical Supplies are also mailed to 5 colonies in the districts of Krishnagiri, Thanjavur, and Dharmapuri in Tamil Nadu.
- Rice, beans, vitamins, mineral and nutrient supplementation is given for the patients as well as clothes and prescription glasses.
- Special support such as Reconstructive/Cosmetic Surgery for limiting disabilities and for correcting stigmatizing deformities is provided.
- Vocational Training is arranged and supported in collaboration with our Social Welfare Unit to create educational and employment opportunities for the leprosy affected persons.
- We provide laboratory services support if necessary for the patients.
- We have been organizing Screening Camps [Dental, ENT, Eye] at the colonies.
- Patient and Colony data is collected regularly to guide and upgrade the care provided.
- We continue to battle against the emergence of the disease by maintaining a monitoring system to detect new cases and relapse of old cases.
- The campus clinic is open from 2am to 4 pm, and takes care of the health needs of the 255 children, 71 staff members, and volunteers/visitors at the primary level.
- Apart from the regular clinic timings the medical staff attend to emergencies round the clock.
- Quarterly Medical Checkups are conducted for the children and Annual Medical Checkups are conducted for the staff. Health insurance facility is available for children and staff.
- Secondary and Tertiary care is being provided at SRMC, SRM, and KV Medical College Hospitals.
- Immunization services are provided for the children and staff.
- Screening Camps [Eye, dental, skin, anemia, diabetes, hypertension, and ENT] are conducted regularly in our campus for the students.
- Health education and counseling programs are organized for the children and staff.