SEKHUKHUNE – In a move to accord residents of Sekhukhune District Municipality comprehensive Tuberculosis (TB) and HIV screening, the Japanese Embassy has handed over a mobile clinic equipped with latest in health care innovations valued at R3 million.
The mobile clinic, handed over at Mashupje Secondary School in Ga-Phasha village for residents and 80 000 former mine workers, includes an integrated chest X-Ray machine provided by a Japanese firm, Fuji-Film.
The move by the Embassy of Japan’s Grant Assistance for Grass-roots Human Security Projects (GGP) scheme comes as a huge benefit following November 2017 report by the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) which highlighted shocking statistics related to perceived human resources shortages, poor infrastructure, tuberculosis infection control measures and adequate stock of medicine in Limpopo health care system.
Handing over the facility to the Aurum Institute in Limpopo, Japanese Ambassador to South Africa, Shigeyuki Hiroki said GGP began its work in the country in 1990 by providing support for educational, medical and non-governmental organizations.
Hiroki said to date, over 600 GGP projects worth almost R438 million had been implemented throughout the country to help address educational, health services, vocational training and other basic human needs at grassroots level.
He added some 20 projects have been launched in Limpopo alone between 2007 and 2016, with 14 of them being construction of school facilities.
The Aurum Institute, which will provide mobile clinic services, is a South African public-benefit organization with more than 20 years experience in leading the response, treatment and research efforts to eradicate TB and HIV.
Kota Toba, Embassy of Japan Spokesperson, said the mobile clinic would move to different rural communities in the province to service individuals suffering from TB and HIV.
Toba added locals would access state of the art testing and treatment facilities in the comfort of their own neighbourhood and won’t have to travel long distances for basic services.
The embassy has strong presence in Limpopo’s education sector where it has spearheaded several projects, including the construction of Nokomeetse Primary School in Schoonoord in 2013, Scheiding Primary School in Lepelle Nkumbi in 2014, Mosepedi Secondary School in Lepelle Nkumbi in 2014 and Nkgele Primary School in Moletjie in 2016.
Toba concluded by delivering innovations such as the TB and HIV mobile clinic where they were most need, they could assist individuals living in rural areas with treatment they deserve to live long and prosperous lives.
Minister of the Department of Rural Affairs and Land Reform, Maite Nkoana-Mashabane and ANCWL leaders attended the handover ceremony.