First caravan for health in Tadian
The month of August of each year is the observance of Lung Month which promotes awareness of every Filipino to focus on the diseases of the lungs and persuading them to help in the promotion of a healthy environment. At the same time, August is also the National Tuberculosis Awareness Month. Tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease caused by a bacteria that commonly affects the lungs. Even though it is curable and preventable, it is still one of the health problems in the municipality of Tadian.And not to mention that due to the geographical location of the municipality and financial constraints, not all of the constituents from its nineteen (19) barangay have access to health services like TB screening.
In order to address that health threat, the government through the Department of Health-Cordillera Administrative Regional Office (DOH- CARO) sponsored the conduct of a TB Caravan for Health Plus last August 20, 2019 at the Saint Michael and All Angels Parish Hall and open ground, Poblacion, Tadian, Mountain Province. The said event or activity was in coordination with the LORMA Medical Center, San Fernando City, La Union; the Provincial Local Government Unit of Mountain Province; and the Local Government Unit of Tadian. Moreover, the activity was one of the health strategies of the government for the promotion of an accessible and affordable quality health services to the people of Tadian. And it aimed to eradicate tuberculosis by educating the public and early screening of possible TB patients guided by this year’s theme: “End TB, Now Na!”.
Two weeks prior to the activity, the health workers assigned in each of the 19 barangays of the municipality conducted a house-to-house survey for possible patients who have tuberculosis as they informed and persuaded them to go for screening during the activity.
On the day of the caravan, as expected, a crowd of participants, young and old patiently waited for their turn to be registered and for the monitoring of their vital signs which included blood pressure (for adults only), weight, pulse rate and respiratory rate by health workers from the Tadian Municipal Health Officer.
The activity was divided into sub-activities: first, was the opening program and secondly, the actual conduct of chest x- rays, sputum collection for gene expert exam, and tuberculin skin test (TST) which will be conducted synchronously. One of the highlights of the opening program that was held at the parish hall was the lecture to the participants done by Mrs. Norma Kalang-ed Safawil from the Provincial Health Office who is also the National Tuberculosis Control Program (NTP) coordinator of Mountain Province. She discussed tuberculosis, its signs and symptoms, diagnostic procedures, treatments, and other important information.
The second part of the activity immediately followed. The working force comprised of one (1) medical doctor, two (2) nurses, one (1) medical technologist,and eight (8) midwives; one (1) sanitary inspector, two (2) nurses, and one (1) information technologist (IT); and six (6) radiologic technologists and technicians, from the Office of the Municipal Health Officer of Tadian, Provincial Health Office (National TB Control Program division), and LORMA Medical Center, respectively. The personnel of the LORMA conducted chest x- rays of adult participants inside the Mobile X- Ray Car parked in front of the SMAA Parish Hall. While waiting for their turn to undergo chest x- rays, sputum for Gene Expert (GenEx) exam was collected from those who were able to expectorate phlegm at a designated place outside the parish hall by the other health workers. Meanwhile, tuberculin skin testing (TST) was conducted to children inside the SMAA Parish Hall by the two nurses from the Office of the Municipal Health Officer.
At the end of the activity, the caravan was able to do one hundred fifty (150) chest x- ray, thirteen (13) sputum collection (GenEx), and twenty- eight (28) for TSTs to clients from the different barangays of the municipality.
The participants who will get positive results will be immediately notified through the Office of the Municipal Health Officer.
The beneficiaries were grateful to DOH-CARO for initiating and sponsoring this endeavor, and LORMA Medical Center, Provincial Local Government Unit of Mountain Province thru the Provincial Health Office, and Local Government Unit of Tadian for supporting the activity.**Steve Tibangwa, Tadian LGU PIO