DRC: Health programme in Oriental province
The health programme launched eight months ago by the Belgian Red Cross, to which the ICRC delegated the project, is proving to be a success. The aim of the programme is to carry out repairs and develop primary health care services in seven of the 18 health centres in the Kabondo health district of the Oriental province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
"We have specific medical objectives", explained project leader Dr Valérie Alaluf, who is working with a team of locally recruited personnel. "Our goal is basically to attract more people to the centres by providing better treatment and preventive care."
Dr Alaluf is lending her expertise to upgrade the skills of health centre staff in the care of pregnant women and pre-school children, and is also helping to train midwives.
With the support of the local population, the team renovating the centres has finished work in two towns, Yabiso and Yetu, and in two rural areas, Madula and Wanierukula. The other three centres - Foyer, Konga-Konga and Bafwaboli - will be ready by the end of August 1998.
The results are already visible, and the nurse in charge of Yabiso health centre, Avobuma Sidomie, is overjoyed. "We used to see barely 20 people a day. Since the centre was renovated, the number of daily consultations has doubled and many young mothers are coming to us."