What is the Mobile Health Team?
The Mobile Heath Team (MHT) found its beginnings in the outreach efforts of founders, Mabelle and Raj Arole, and today serves as the bridge between the community and CRHP’s on-campus medical and development staff. Historically, villagers have had neither the time, nor the resources to travel all the way to the hospital in Jamkhed for care, and as a result, healthcare was brought to them. In order to build trust and confidence, the original outreach team provided curative services via weekly clinics in the villages, and as rapport was built, the original team developed into the MHT. Today the team possesses a broad array of capacities including health promotion, preventive health services, social work, development projects, and community organization.
The Mobile Health Team consists of a driver, social workers, a paramedic, and on certain occasions, a physician. However, these distinctions tend to be in name only, and all team members are trained as fully as possible in all jobs and tasks. All team members address patients’ clinical and social questions, and are considered equals with each member given respect and importance. The integration of the team and skill sharing allows for flexibility, and creates a resiliency in our system in the face of unpredictable absences, and personnel shortages.
What population does the Mobile Health Team serve?
The Mobile Health Team helps train Village Health Workers and work side by side with them to provide health services to project villages. MHT members help lead and provide support for the Adolescent Boys and Girls Programs, Women’s Self-Help Groups, and Farmers’ Clubs. In addition, the MHT members work with trainees and researchers from all over the world to collect village data and educate others about the Jamkhed Model.
What are the goals of the Mobile Health Team?
- To provide on-site support to Village Health Workers (VHWs) and help add authority to the VHW’s decisions in the eyes of the villagers.
- Act as a part of a referral system in which they are the second line of defense.
- Help dispel notions of caste, literacy, or gender barriers to ability or competence.
- To advise and mentor villagers in development activities such as Women’s Self Health Groups and Farmers’ Clubs.
- To link villages to our health center’s Julia Hospital, the third and final level of our referral system. If a patient cannot be treated in the field, he or she has the option of coming to our hospital, which utilizes a sliding-scale payment system to accommodate for all socioeconomic situations. The MHT follows up with patients in their villages after discharge.