Health

Health indicators in Chin State continue to be among the worst within Myanmar. The primary cause of death is from infectious diseases including pneumonia, diarrhoea and malaria – most of which are preventable and treatable. Medicines are scarce and expensive, and despite there being numerous health facilities, many are empty while all are understaffed.  Due to the remoteness between villages and towns, patients only travel to a hospital when their deteriorating health conditions are at their worst, with some arriving too late. 

OUR GOAL is to improve access to public health and primary medical care in Chin state.

Since 2008, HHM have trained 834 Community Health Workers (CHWs) and 166 Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) to develop a community-led response to health challenges across the region. This network of volunteer health workers is spread over 551 partner villages.

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Summary

Based in Lailenpi, Hope Clinic was constructed in 2016, and provides services to just under 2,000 patients in and around Lailenpi each year.  The clinic has room for up to six in-patients and in emergencies can provide a referral service and transport patients to hospitals in Pakokku or Yangon. The clinic also acts as a clinical training centre for CHWs and TBAs and a base for a mobile medical team who conduct clinics in remote rural villages throughout the year. 

Challenge

Chin State has only two functioning hospitals for a population of just under half a million and due to the remoteness between villages and towns, patients only travel to a hospital when their deteriorating health conditions are at their worst, with some arriving too late.  As a result, rural villagers often rely on local traditional remedies or seek treatments from untrained ‘health workers’ or traditional healers.

In villages where the government is operative, health care is mainly served by ambulant midwives who undertake ante-natal and prenatal care as well as immunisations. Resources for transport are however scarce, and often midwives are forced to spend their own money to secure transport to the villages, especially in border areas. These villages are far away from the main district roads requiring several hours and sometimes a day or more of walking in remote and scarcely populated areas. This situation can increase risks and vulnerabilities for health professionals travelling alone and the majority are unable to fulfil their duties in these areas.

 

Solution

Hope Clinic was constructed in 2016 to provide out patient and inpatient services to the community in and around Lailenpi. The facility includes an eight bed inpatient facility, a small storeroom for medicines, a private consultation room and an outpatients seating area. The clinic also provides a space for teaching the local community about primary healthcare, the distribution of multi-vitamins to mothers and infants under-5 and a deworming programme for children.  

HHM have three qualified medical doctors on staff and three qualified nurses, who studied in Inida, based in Lailenpi. They work alongside experienced local medical support staff employed by HHM to run the Hope Clinic. In-patient services, including basic emergency care and stabilisation services are provided 24 hours a day, 7 days a week as required. Out-patient services are provided 6 days a week. 

Last year, the clinic treated 2050 patients from the local community.