Gauteng health workers visit taxi ranks, train stations

Friday, June 7, 2013

Pretoria – Healthcare professionals and volunteers in Gauteng took to the streets on Thursday to bring health services directly to the people.

The health workers took the ‘Promoting health saves lives’ message to taxi ranks, train and bus stations in the City of Johannesburg, where 1 078 people accessed HIV counselling and testing services.

During the campaign, hundreds of people who went past the Johannesburg Park Station, Bree, MTN Noord and Faraday taxi ranks took the opportunity to have tests done and talk to healthcare workers.

HIV counselling and testing; tuberculosis screening and treatment; the distribution of condoms; cervical cancer screening; prevention of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections; as well as counselling on the fixed-dose combination for antiretroviral treatment were some of the services provided.

Checking blood pressure, blood sugar levels and eye tests were also offered to the people.

Chief Director at the Gauteng Health Department, Thandi Chaana, who was among the health workers in the campaign, said they wanted to reach out to the people who never have a chance to visit health institutions.

"People asked questions that have been bothering them and others had an opportunity to have health checks done ... Women were encouraged to have cervical and breast cancer screening, because early detection makes a difference between proper management and untimely death," said Chaana.

The department said that similar services will be taken to other public areas, including at the Germiston and Marabastad train and taxi stations, in the coming weeks.

“One of the many focus [areas] of the department is to promote health in order to encourage people to visit clinics more frequently without waiting until they are sick,” the department said. –

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