Touching lives through Mobile Health Unit's

Heggadadevanakote is one of the most under-developed taluk in Karnataka. The taluk is the home for several indigenous forest based tribals, who lost their way of life when their natural home was declared a National park. After generations of living in a delicate balance with nature, the tribe of Jenukurubas were forced to settle down in the villages of H.D.Kote taluk, Mysore district. In spite of the continuous efforts from public-NGO sectors, bringing them to the mainstream of the society remains the biggest hurdle.

Dammanakattehaadi is a tribal village with population around 200. The Mobile Health Unit of Swami Vivekananda Youth Movement visits this place on a weekly basis every Saturday.

Kooramma, comes from a poor tribal family, which consists of her husband, 5 children and her own sister, brother-in-law. Despite of this, the most painful part is that Kooramma had already lost 2 of her children and the husband, a drunkard- never gives his helping hand for eking out the family needs.

With the health care vehicle on her doorstep, Kooramma has got hardly any advantage of the facility. Also, she has never visited hospital (which is about 16 kms from her place) for any of her previous deliveries. The Health Facilitator winded back the incident during her previous delivery. Inspite of the efforts from the RCH team she had delivered at home. Unfortunately, it was still-birth and she had severe anemia and postpartum hemorrhage.  After necessary treatment, it was told to her regarding the birth control measures including the surgery. She was always reluctant for that.

During the Health Facilitator’s visit, it was noticed that she had severely swollen feet. It was brought to the notice of Medical Officer of the nearby PHC and Anganwadi workers. All of them tried their level best for bringing her to the hospital. At the end of the day, efforts were all in vain. Every time she gave a new set of reasons. Finally the team succeeded by the lure of free medicines provision.

Kooramma was advised to get admitted in the hospital for treatment of PIH (Pregnancy Induced Hypertension) which caused the swelling of her legs. As she was reluctant again, the field staff, hospital staff had to struggle a lot for accomplishment. On the same day she gave birth to a healthy male child.

It is now a greatest challenge to all the staff involved to motivate her for birth-control measure, thereby provide a healthy living to her. Also, Kooramma taught us a lesson ‘how to’ address similar cases. When seen through a different lens we probably see alcoholism, over-crowded family, blind beliefs and a biased state of their thinking.