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Update on Health Screening Clinics in Kenya

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Update on Health Screening Clinics in Kenya

Continuing to Provide Critical Health Care Outreach

By Allison Kozicharow; Edited by Elizabeth Fine

In March 2023 WiRED International launched our innovative Health Screening Clinic (HSC) program in Kisumu, Kenya. Led by a WIRED team of community health workers (CHWs), the goal was to take basic health screening out into the field to reach people in the community who have few places to turn to for health care.  

Today the HSCs are making a major contribution to community health. The CHWs, accompanied by a clinician, held this month’s HSC in Bandani village located outside Kisumu, Kenya.

During the eight-hour mobile clinic, CHWs:

  • Screened and identified potential health problems such as high blood pressure and tuberculosis, which are most treatable when detected early.
  • Took other vital signs and measures for general health assessments. These included weight, height, blood oxygen and in specific cases, blood sugar.
  • Offered vision screening for children and adults.
  • Provided basic clinical services to treat bumps, cuts and bruises.
  • Offered health and prevention training and referral services where appropriate to connect people with higher-level, medical resources.
  • Collected statistics for the monthly report. (See sidebar for details.)

The HSC program represents an important advance in the development of WiRED’s CHW program. HSCs offer yet another opportunity for CHWs to identify ailing individuals and to detect health problems that might be brewing in the larger community. Thus, these HSCs not only address individual health issues but they provide an effective community health surveillance filter.

After the successful launch of the HSC program last year, WiRED’s Program Director Lillian Dajoh said:

The clinical outreach not only helps in improving awareness of health issues but it also inspires skill development [among the CHWs] to address those issues. HSCs are an innovative way to reach out and influence a large audience to meet the needs of the most vulnerable people in the community. The activity helps in improving the health outcomes in the community by lowering the mortality rates because we encounter very sick patients who are unable to go to hospital because of lack of health insurance. Such outreach should continue in all the slum areas in Kisumu. Thanks to WIRED for the innovativeness.

HSC March Report — By the Numbers

The CHW team:

  • Screened 127 people (54 males, 73 females, 22 children) for general health, including tuberculosis, hypertension, weight, temperature level;
  • Arranged for the clinician to treat the clients who were sick;
  • Tested 36 people eligible for HIV testing (none tested positive, although a number of people still have HIV but test HIV free due to their regimen of antiretroviral drugs);
  • X-rayed 88 people for tuberculosis;
  • Detected four people suggestive of tuberculosis and sent their sputum samples for confirmatory testing using a Truenat machine in the Pandipieri medical facility; and
  • Educated participants on health topics of concern such as cholera, high blood pressure and nutrition.