Fighting Tuberculose (TB) was the first Gesar Fund health project (2008). Due to the large earthquake in april 2010 the Gesar Fund had to postpone this project as all docters and nurses in the district were send to the sisaster area by the government.
Then we started to think about a project that would need less time investment by medical personel and this has become the Fighting Hepatitis Project.
In november 2011 the Fighting-TB project could be resumed.
Next to the two current health projects the Gesar Fund also provides ad hoc medical aid.
In China people have the right to be TB-tested and treated for six months. Most of the people, not only the nomads, are not aware of this.
Therefore the Gesar Fund educates the people regarding Chinese healthcare and regarding to prevention of diseases and infections.
Regarding TB: we test ourselves with a mobile x-ray machine in our Gesar Ambulance. The ambulance has been bought in 2009 as we wanted to reach the remote living nomads who were not able to visit a hospital. Our approach has inspired other districts to also use ambulances with mobile devices.
In the Fighting TB project we work together with the Peoples Hospital in Chengdu. Apart from the costs of our ambulance we also pay the doctors and nurses who ride along. Also we share our knowledge with them regarding the spread of TB under the population.
The treatment of TB has quite an impact on the liver and stomach, expecially when the health of the patient is not very good. Medicins are not reimbursed by the goverment. In case people are not able to pay the medicins themselves, the Gesar Fund also spends money on medicins against the side effects of TB medicins.
Education regarding TB infection is a matter high on the Gesar Fund agenda. A problem is that many people are illiterate. Thus education needs to be done orally or via cd’s and dvd’s. The last two options have had our priority for years but due to governmental regulations our plans still are in a start-up phase.
Hepatitis, especially hepatitis B is a large healtcare issue in China and even more in the poor districts like Yushu.
The Fighting Hepititis project aims at testing in hepatitis A and B and on vaccinating people who have no antibodies in their blood. The costs of the vaccin and the tests are paid by the Gesar Fund, so that the often very poor also have access to this healthcare. Also the people are educated how to prevent infections and what can be done to stimulate recovery of this disease. Education mainly is given by the enthousiastic doctors and nurses of the Peoples Hospital we cooperate with. Apart from that we have our team of local volunteers.
Under the Chinese population hepatitis as well as HIV is a serious taboo and although people rarely die due to hepititis B, the fear of this disease is big. Part of the health care education is taking away this fear from the people.
In the district where Tibetans live 60% of the people carried the disease or still are carrying it. Most infections are transferred from inected mother to baby. The chance on chronical Hepititis with the babies is very high as in 90% of the cases they do not have the strength to overcome it by themselves, whereas adults often can. As a result this will cause a life-long poor health which in 2% of the cases will result in liver cirrhosiss or liver cancer. The later people get hepatitis B, the greater the chance on curing by themselves. This in mind the Gesar Fund gives extra attention to testing and vacciinating pregnant women and people who want to start a family.
For permanent immunity three vaccinations are needed. The standard price for vaccinating one person is 60 Yuan (7 Euro). Thanks to the discount the Peoples Hospital grants us we can vaccinate for 45 Yuan (5 Euro) per person! After the big eauthquake in 2010 the Gesar Fund in one year paid for 6000 vaccinations.
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