Primary Healthcare through SOWs during Pandemic

Smile on Wheels

Smile Foundation’s Health Cannot Wait campaign has truly lived up to its name. We understand that even in the midst of the pandemic, regular people continue having regular health issues. However, due to the restrictions at healthcare facilities, not everyone has been able to access primary healthcare. Smile Foundation has stepped up to take primary healthcare to the doorsteps of the vulnerable people who are dependent on government facilities. Our Smile on Wheels mobile healthcare vans have benefitted thousands. Here are some of the instances where it has left the most impact.

Primary healthcare in Noida

Smile on Wheels

Raj Rani is a 30-year-old woman who stays in Noida. The Smile on Wheels team treated her for scabies. “When the symptoms presented initially, I did not pay much attention to it. I assumed it was just an itch. When the itching did not stop for months, I finally sought medical advice. After several misdiagnoses and intermittent treatments, the doctors finally diagnosed scabies,” she shares. Scabies is a very common disease in her locality. Raj Rani started taking medication for the disease. However, every time she tried to wean off the medicines, it came back with worse symptoms.

Raj Rani came to the Smile on Wheels for treatment. The medical officer confirmed the scabies diagnosis and prescribed medicine. Over the course of a few sessions, the SoW team also taught her about preventive measures for this communicable disease. She has now recovered. She appreciates the value of good health now more than ever.

Relief for Meera in Agra

Smile on Wheels

Meera stays with her husband, three sons, and one daughter in a small two-room house near Agra. Due to the COVID-induced lockdown, her husband and sons cannot find any work. Arranging ration for the house has become a great difficulty. In case anyone needs even primary healthcare, visiting the doctor and buying medicines takes a toll.

Meera says, “I was first told about SOW by a community mobilizer. I had consulted many doctors for body ache and itching throughout my body. I kept buying and taking medicines, but did not find any relief. Finally, I visited the SOW. The medical officer suggested a course of treatment and gave me a few medicines.”

After just two days, Meera experience relief. And after 15 days, she was feeling much better than earlier. Since then, if anyone in her family falls sick, they visit the SOW.

A boon for baby Yash

Yash is the five-year-old son of Sispal, a vehicle mechanic by profession. His father earns a meagre amount every month to support his family, who live in the JJ Colony of Noida’s Sector 9.

Yash needed urgent medical attention in the middle of the pandemic. However, his family could not take him to government hospital due to the threat of COVID, and they could not even go to a private hospital due to the high treatment cost. During the regular visit of the Smile on Wheels van in his area, Yash visited the MMU with burns. The SOW team gave him proper medication and counselled his parents on how to take care of him.

As a result of the correct treatment, his condition has now improved. His parents are very grateful and satisfied with the treatment which saved their time as well as money.

SOW provides aid to diabetic patient in Agra

Smile on Wheels

Meena is 60 years old and has been living in Bhamrauli Katara for 30 years. She has four sons and one daughter. She works as a daily wage labourer. Some days, they have difficulty in arranging ration for the family.

She shares, “I was diagnosed with diabetes about it three years ago. After my husband, there is no means of income to buy medicines or consult a doctor.” In January 2021 Meena met a community mobilizer who told her about the SOW. Within 15 days of starting treatment, she experienced relief from her ailment. Now she is a regular patient of the SOW.

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Author

Smile Foundation

Smile Foundation is an NGO in India that directly benefits over 15,00,000 children and their families every year. We have more than 400 live welfare projects on education, healthcare, livelihood, and women's empowerment in over 2,000 remote villages and slums across 25 states of India.

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