Participation of Zahedan University of Medical Sciences Community Health Volunteers in serving Arbaeen pilgrims from Pakistan
The Arbaeen Pilgrimage is the worlds largest public gathering that is held every year in the Holy city of Karbala, Iraq. Some of pilgrims from all folks of life make their journey to the Holy city of Karbala from Pakistani cities by road, crossing the Iran-Pakistan border in Mirjaveh, Iran.
In Iran-Pakistan border area, many mawakibs were devised with the aim of providing accommodation, food, drinking water and public health and medical services for free. Medical teams including, medical doctors, nurses and paramedics offered medical services to the pilgrims in two temporary clinics set up by Zahedan University of Medical Sciences. Diseases control officers administered oral polio vaccine to all the pilgrims and the pilgrims also were screened for infectious diseases, including malaria and cholera.
The Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) of Zahedan University of Medical Sciences (ZAUMS), along with medical teams and public health mission deployed to Iran-Pakistan border city of Mirjaveh, provided round the clock services to more than 32 thousands of the Arbaeen pilgrims. As part of International Health Regulations (IHR) protocol, the CHVs embarked on intensified case finding with a focus on patients with malaria, acute watery diarrhea, and other febrile syndromes. The CHVs have already been trained how to use malaria rapid diagnostic test (RDT) kits, and take stool samples for cholera.
The trained CHVs also served as paramedics in offering services such as checking blood pressure, blood sugar and dressing and injections. More over a few of volunteers who were able to speak Urdu , served as interpreters in the clinics that facilitated the provision of health services.
Unforeseen gathering of a huge number of pilgrims in a short period of time, in the round the clock camp that was established in the border area, resulted in a pile up of a huge amount of solid waste. The CHVs, under the supervision of environmental health officers participated in management and collection of the solid waste in the temporary residence camp of Arbaa’in pilgrims. A number of pilgrims were also recruited by CHVs to participate in the public health activities.
The CHVs took the initiative to recruit volunteers among Pakistani pilgrims who were able to speak Persian and communicate with other people. The Pakistani volunteers helped in conveying information regarding water and food sanitation, and removing the food boxes leftovers in the tents from previous days distributions.
It should be cited that ZAUMS so far has recruited more than 10 thousands CHVs, who have been participating in a wide range of public health events and activities planned by the university.
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|Date : 1396/08/22 ٠٨:٠٧
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