The China-funded Kyaukphyu Anargat (Future) Mobile Clinic project in western Myanmar’s Rakhine state entered its final stage in late December, already providing free healthcare service to over 1,500 villagers.
U Kyaw Win, 54, from Kyaukphyu Township’s Shauk Chaung Village, is one of the hundreds of villagers who benefited from free healthcare and medicines from the mobile clinic.
“I received healthcare and medicines free of charge for my diabetes and hypertension diseases,” he said, adding “my wife also received free medical treatment from the clinic.”
“We could save money for one month as the clinic gave me medicines for one month,” he said.
Win said that his village is about 15 miles (about 24.1 km) away from Kyaukphyu town, and the route between the two places is devious.
“There is no clinic in my village,” he added, saying that the villagers have to come to Kyaukphyu town for medical emergencies, however, the transport costs are high.
“Because of the difficulties, it is hard to arrive at the town in time when medical emergencies occur. It costs a lot to see doctors,” he said.
“Now, the doctors from the mobile clinic came to our village, and we didn’t have to pay for any transport costs,” he added.
Most of the people in the village are farmers, and the clinic’s free provision of health consultation, medical diagnosis and treatment services helped them reduce their spending on health, he said.
“I want the mobile clinic’s doctors to come very often to our village,” he said, adding that it will be beneficial for the villagers.
The project’s medical team has already visited 19 villages on past Sundays since July 31, and will visit the 20th and final village on this Sunday (Dec. 25), the project’s officials said.
Designed by the China International Trust Investment Corporation (CITIC) Consortium and funded by the Yunnan Aid, the mobile clinic project was being implemented by the local civil society organization Kyaukphyu Socio-Economic Development Assistance Association (KSEDAA).
“We took the role of operations for the project. Since we provided healthcare service to people in the first village, we received requests from other villages,” U Kyaw Kyaw Oo, chairman of the KSEDAA, said.
The project aims to fulfill the healthcare needs of the locals in the villages, he said, adding that the KSEDAA also has plans to meet the educational and socio-economic needs of the local residents, he added.
Participants in the project’s medical team are three doctors and some nurses from the Kyaukphyu General Hospital. They worked for it on their off days.
Dr. Nay Zaw Htay, 38, is one of the three doctors participating in the mobile clinic project.
“As most of the villagers are facing financial difficulties, the healthcare program is very helpful for them, but it is temporary,” the doctor said, expressing his hope for a long-term healthcare program.
Khin Cho Than, a nurse in her 20s, told Xinhua that she joined the mobile clinic program as she wanted to help the villagers in difficulty.
“The program is very beneficial for the villagers, particularly for the poor and elderly ones,” she added. ■