[Saturday Support] Help bring low-cost health care to rural Punjab
Access to health care in remote areas of India is a problem. In rural and remote areas of India, chronic diseases like diabetes and heart disease are rarely diagnosed or treated until too late and the costs of treatment often impoverish the family. Moreover, the barriers to diagnosis and treatment are high, because the needed health care is often too far away and too expensive.
The non-profit organization Health4All Neerog Nidhee is working to change this scenario with a Doorstep primary health care model in the state of Punjab, whith a system of lay health workers, trained and equipped with tablets that are wirelessly linked to mobile diagnostic tools. Community health workers are guided by instructions on their tablets and backed up by remotely-connected expert doctors, to provide a level of health care as vaccinations, screening and treatment that rural communities simply cannot access today.
To meet this goal, Health4all is aiming to identify and treat people in low-income rural communities and have already completed phase 1. The organization has screened 7,500 people over age 30 in four rural communities in Punjab and, with the results, learned that a diagnosis through Doorstep Health can be done for about $1 per patient, using well-trained village health workers who visited and tested people in their own homes.
To move to the second phase, the Doorstep Health needs funds to hire staff, enable treatments and underwrite all costs. They are trying to raise $50,000. “Doorstep Health is better because: health problems can be identified earlier, when they are easier to treat; patient compliance is better with monthly visits in their home to re-test and check progress and to share educational materials and videos; costs are far lower, and hence more affordable, than with institution-based care”, they say at their fundraising campaing at Indiegogo.
Health4All Neerog Nidhee was already awarded with the Grant Challenges Canada – Saving Lives at Birth, Swedish Sida – Detection and Treatment of Chronic Diseases and Abbott Laboratories – Pilot Study on Diabetic Mellitus in Ruaral Punjab. Help them spread the Doorstep Health model to more people in Indian rural communities: click here to read more about the campaign and contribute.
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