By offering a regular health check-up, we can identify potential problems early on and improve the learning outcomes of students. This includes less school days missed due to sickness, better health to aid learning, adherence to and understanding of treatment, as well as prevention due to regular visits.
What we do
The Wellness Wagon is a school mobile health clinic originally started by the Starfish Greathearts Foundation. It has since evolved and we now offer this service in partnership with Bulungula Incubator.
A qualified Nurse with medical supplies and vehicle visits each junior and pre-school in our area on a regular basis providing much-needed health check-ups and treatment for learners free of charge.
Although we already work with our local hospital outreach team that visits our pre-school twice a year, this project will help us reach more children more regularly than just those enrolled at our pre-school.
What we’ve achieved so far
- Over 2500 children seen by a qualified Nursing Sister:
- Of those, over 1100 were treated on site;
- A further 280 were referred to see a doctor.
- Evidence beginning to show a lessening of treatments and referrals needed.
We still want to…
We identified a number of gaps to bridge to ensure the effectiveness and sustainability of the Wellness Wagon in the Coffee Bay area:
- Providing a staff member to assist the nurse and driver;
- A staff member following up on clinic and hospital referrals;
- Accommodation, food and cooking facilities for Wellness Wagon staff;
- Ensuring effective monitoring and evaluation for our reporting structures.
Why we do what we do
The Wellness Wagon was initiated to mitigate some of the challenges to accessing health care, which include:
- Long queues at health facilities;
- Inadequate staffing and medical resources;
- School absenteeism as a result of having to travel long distances to health facilities.
Source: Starfish Greathearts Foundation
To further understand the issues faced here in accessing healthcare, please see more here.
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