Vehicle Support | Zambia

Vehicle support for the Integrated Health Care Support Program

Partner | IBVM Community of Southern Africa

Location | Lukulu, Zambia

Overview

This project provides critical transport for all aspects of the Integrated Health Care Support Program (IHCSP), which supports the impoverished communities across the districts of Lukulu and Mitete.

The vehicle primarily provides support to those in need through the home-based care (HBC) program, the Baby Milk program for vulnerable babies, and the HEPS program, which produces and distributes high energy protein supplements to those in need of nutritional support. The vehicle often carries nurses to the villages to review and distribute medicine allocations to the HBC clients. It is also used to collect testing reagents from the hospital for the HIV counselling and testing centre.

Increasingly, the vehicle is being used to transport highly vulnerable and marginalised patients for specialist orthopaedic treatment at the Chitokoloki Hospital, located in a neighbouring province, thereby providing access to life-changing treatment for people who may otherwise die.

This vehicle support ultimately works towards addressing the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 3, Good Health and Well-being, within this remote and undeveloped area of Zambia.

Challenges

The districts of Lukulu and Mitete consist of many scattered rural village communities over vast expanses. Without transportation, these vulnerable communities are unable to get the medical treatment or support they need. Even those living in the township struggle to access the hospital which is approximately five kilometres from the town centre.

Impact

This project provides critical support to enable the ongoing activity of the IHCSP. In practical terms, this means that vulnerable and sick people from the districts of Lukulu and Mitete can access the local hospital, receive medicine, nutrition, and home-based care when needed.

Late last year, the vehicle was used to transport two critically ill patients from the local hospital to Chitokoloki Hospital for advanced emergency treatment when no Ministry of Health vehicles were available. Driving through the night in hazardous conditions, the lives of the two patients were saved thanks to the availability of the vehicle and the willingness of the driver and health staff.

Activities
  • Transporting the sick to and from the local district hospital.
  • Providing access to specialist treatment at the better-resourced Chitokoloki Hospital.
  • Distributing PPE and COVID-19 prevention training to local communities.
  • Transporting nurses, caregivers and medicines for home visits.
  • Delivering milk formula to rural health centres for carers of vulnerable babies to access.
  • Supporting some health programs to become self-sustainable through income-generation measures, such as selling and distributing soya beans and other local goods.

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ON OUR VEHICLE SUPPORT project