When’s the last time you went for a medical checkup? Do you have any idea what your blood pressure or blood sugar is? For most of us who have the option of walking into a clinic or health care centre to get checked wouldn’t have thought of how much joy a free medical camps would bring; but for the over 2,500 residents who turned up for the #TwawezaLive medical camp in Kinoru Dispensary Grounds in Meru, it was a dream come true!
Safaricom Foundation in conjuction with the Kenya Diabetes Management & Information Centre (DMI Centre) held their second free medical camp in Meru as part of the ongoing foundation’s efforts to ease access to quality medical care in in the country.
Founded in May 1999, the DMI Centre has been educating the public about the alarming increase in diabetes in Kenya and across the world. The Centre has been involved in creating diabetes awareness all over the country in the last 10 years through free community medical camps, training of health care professionals, lay educators and training of children with diabetes.
DMI Centre has also been creating awareness and screening in various religious organizations, schools, corporate bodies and at social functions. While conducting awareness activities on diabetes, non-communicable diseases that share risk factors with diabetes were also identified. Complications arising from poor management of diabetes led to the need for comprehensive medical camps.
In Meru, the services offered were free consultations, diagnosis, surgeries and treatment as well as free medicine.It benefited patients suffering from diabetes, prostate and cervical cancer, eye cataracts and other ailments in Meru and the vast Mt Kenya Region to patients of all ages.
Family Planning services were also offered through teams from local hospitals as well as VCT Service providers who were also present in the camps. All in all general check-ups were carried out by DMI among other health service providers. With the support of Safaricom Foundation all these services were provided for free where the camps attracted between 1000 and 3000 persons so far, all with different ailments and diseases. Where serious cases are identified, patients are referred to Meru Level 5 hospital for further checkup. Safaricom Foundation also follows up with referral cases from the camps.
Speaking on this, George Mbiuki, Safaricom Head of Mt Kenya and North Eastern Region said: “Access to quality health is still a challenge in many parts of the country. This medical camp is therefore providing free medical consultations and treatment to the residents of Meru and beyond. It is also part of our 10 day Twaweza Live Campaign that will culminate with the concert at the Kinoru Stadium.”