FFPS ON WHEELS (MOBILE HOSPITAL PROGRAM)
“He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything”, Arabic proverb
Pakistan has made rapid strides in the health sector since independence. However, various eye opening data clearly indicate that access to healthcare still remains a challenge. While the health statistics of rural population continue to be poor, the health status and access to health services of urban slum dwellers on the other has also surfaced to be equally deplorable. Despite accounting for poor population, urban areas have less than 4% of government primary health care facilities. People suffer from adverse health conditions owing to mainly two reasons: first the lack of education and thus lack of awareness; and second the unwillingness to lose a day’s wage in order to reach the nearest medical facility. The neglect in even the simplest preventive medical treatment usually leads to more serious ailment and eventually into deaths. The need of the hour is thus a two pronged approach: first, to bring quality health care services to doorsteps of the needy and second to promote healthcare awareness and contemporary health care services amongst the underprivileged. In such a scenario, a mobile medical services delivery system is the most practical mechanism and in subscription to this view, Foundation for Poor Souls (FFPS) has initiated the Mobile Hospital Program. This is a unique program that seeks to address problems of mobility, accessibility and availability of primary health care with special focus on children and women, in urban slums and remote rural areas. Program reaching out to around 35 to 40 lakhs beneficiaries in coming five years.
Foundation for Poor Souls (FFPS) would operate by taking well- equipped medical vans along with specialized doctors, nurses, medical staff, equipment and medicines to the identified villages/ slums in a systematic manner. Foundation for Poor Souls vans will cover the rural or slum areas in the vicinity where either no governmental health care facilities exist or the same is not sufficient for the population. Each unit is covering the vicinity of up to 25km from its center and visiting 2-3 villages in a day on a regular basis. These mobile hospitals offer preventive, primitive and curative medical expertise to the needy children and women in remote rural areas and urban slums. In deserving and lifesaving cases, it functions like a referral clinic and ambulance. Each van is stationed in an urban center usually with a static hospital, which acts like a referral medical center. The teams also carry out awareness activities on health and hygiene in order to achieve health seeking behavior.
Foundation for Poor Souls (FFPS) has launched this program as a part of its endeavor to introduce healthcare awareness and contemporary healthcare services seeking behavior among rural masses and the underprivileged.
The services provided are OPD, Anti-Natal/ Post-Natal services, identification of difficult pregnancy and referral for institutional care. Immunization- Mother and Children, Minor surgery, Blood pressure and diabetes examination, X-ray, ECG, First Aid, Distribution of Iron Folic tablets, Vit-A Prophylaxis, Treatment of malnutrition cases, etc.
Children and women’s health is one of FFPS’s prime concerns. A referral service network for them also needs to be developed. Education and counseling on health and hygiene, family planning promotion with emphasis on contraception, safe sex , spacing methods would also be imparted. This program would also ensure organizing regular health camps, including minor surgical interventions.
Foundation for Poor Souls (FFPS) aims to run a fleet of 30 fully equipped mobile medical hospital vans under FFPS on Wheels program reaching out to around 35- 40 lakhs beneficiaries in coming five years.