The Community Health Department (CHD) is located in the third floor of the KCMC main building. The department activities are based on the three pillars of KCMC which are Services, Teaching and Research. The CHD has the vision “to see a working whole system that actively facilitates learning, research, as well as provision of community services that fulfill the KCMC vision” and the mission “to send for mighty hope, and work together to heal the world.”
Thousands of former students of KCMC are working all over Tanzania. Specialists from KCMC visit hospitals in many parts of the country by air or by road, with over 250 service days per year. Nearly 10,000 patients are seen and over 500 operations performed.
The radio call system connects KCMC with 25 hospitals and not only arranges flights, but also gives staff in the field an opportunity to obtain expert advice and assistance in problem situations.
Among other outreach activities are home visits by the Social Welfare Department, mother and child health, occupational therapy.
The Community Health Department and the Public Health Nurses collaborate with others within KCMC and throughout the surrounding area in providing health education, health promotion services, research facilitation and teaching.
In the Hospital
CHD is known for its efficiency in conducting health education within the hospital for both in and out patients. The Health education given varies according to current issues globally; nationally and locally. This year we had opportunity to use Radio FM in Moshi and SautiyaIinjili to educate surrounding communities about Ebola disease.
Within the hospital, we have managed to give health education at various departments in regular basis as follows.
Health education to pregnant women who are admitted in OG1 and OG2 before and after delivery. Topic covered ranged from importance of early clinic attendance with their partners, danger signs, anemia in pregnancy ,and importance of breast feeding and how to handle the baby during breast feeding, how to express milk and safe storage of the milk for the babies for working mothers. Also postnatal mothers were educated on the importance of giving immunization and different types of vaccine to their babies. At the Antenatal clinics additional topic of family planning was given.
Health education to postnatal mothers was provided. This includedpost natal care, counseling on nutrition, young infant feeding and importance of mother’s milk, how to position the baby during breastfeeding, good attachment, immunization for mother and the baby and also family planning.
Outbreak Diseases [Dengue, Ebola, etc.], Hypertension, Obesity and diabetic lifestyle predisposing factors were taught. This including facilitating the diabetic clinic. In total, a total of 6000 patients and clients received health education during the period of reporting.
Infectious Control at KCMC Kitchen and nearby restaurants: At KCMC Kitchen, 41 staff handling food for in-patients, students, and staffs were assessed for their health status. Routine medical examination was done as per KCMC infectious control guidelines (three times per year). Urine and stool was checked. This exercise is considered important in order to avoid transmission of the infection (a detailed report is available in the department and the Matrons’ office). For the nearby hotels, we have conducted environmental and sanitation checkups. Problems were identified (poor cleanness and medical check-up for staff not done) and discussed with hotel owners.
Community services: In collaboration with the collage we managed to conduct outreach activities training the” tomorrows” doctor on how to work with the communities ; We took them to the dispensaries to learn the role of dispensaries’ committees in relation to communities they are serving. The students were also taken to CCBRT, sewage system and we visited people with disability. The aim for all this community outreach it to make the students aware of the community needs so that they can from their early career development plan to work in rural areas.
Supervision of MNCH in the Northern zone: In total 26 health facilities were visited (Kilimanjaro region 12; Arusha region 14). Challenges found were mainly lack of skilled staff; readiness of the health facilities to tackle MNCH issues and monitoring indicators for MNCH are not documented (a separate detailed report is available in the department).
Zonal RCH Meeting
Zonal RCH Meeting was conducted from 3rd to 5th December. Regional participants from Arusha, Kilimanjaro and Tanga attended plus Zonal level and stakeholders from EGPAF AND Engender health attended the meeting. The major aim was to discuss on how to improve quality of MNCH services in the zone. Zonal and Regional RCH Reports were presented showing the achievements and challenges. Other educative topics were presented i.e. sharpened one plan and score card to show regional and district performance were presented, RCH live serving commodities, ILS Gate way and report format for RCH Services. (Summary report of the meeting is available in the department)
Youth Friendly Reproductive Health Clinic: We conduct Youth Friendly Reproductive Health Clinic daily but specific on Tuesday and Thursday. Youth from various Colleges in Moshi city, Secondary school students From Moshi Municipal and Moshi Rural District, and other adolescents from various communities attended this clinic. Health education and counseling of HIV testing, STI plus provision of condoms are part of the services provided. The total number of youth attended since January to December 2014 were 249.
Training is one of the major activity the CHD department is involved. We train Research Methodology, Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Health Promotion to all undergraduates and Post graduates within the KCMU College as per planned timetable. Teaching methodologies includes class lectures, Team Based learning-TBL, Problem Based Learning-PBL, and rotational blocks mainly at different hospital departments like OPDs, Occupational Health, and Physiotherapy which enabled students to acquire the theoretical and practical skills of the subject course contents.
The department conducted the following research funded by MEPI - Medical Education Partnership Initiative an independent organization that works in partnership with the KCMU College:
“Module Village for Medical Students at KCMC College” – We have received all the equipment needed and data collection phase ended on 15thDecember 2014. Six hundred households were visited and different variables collected plus GIS mapping of the model village done.
Assessment of school policies and environment in promoting physical activity and nutrition toward prevention of non-communicable diseases among school age children in Moshi Municipality, Tanzania
Research on knowledge and practice on physical activity and nutrition on non-communicable diseases among health care workers in Kilimanjaro region
NIH R21 Grants funded research on development of mental health treatment for Obstetric fistula patients in Tanzania