C-NES Newsletter (October– December 2022)
C-NES Review Meet
The C-NES Review Meeting took place in Guwahati on December 17th, 2022, bringing together a diverse group of stakeholders, including District Programme Officers of the Boat Clinic Units, members of C-NES’ Programme Management Unit, and Trustees HS Das and Dr. Mahfuza Rahman. The event was chaired by the Managing Trustee, Sanjoy Hazarika, who opened the meeting by congratulating the attendees and expressing gratitude for their contributions to the successful operation of the Boat Clinics.
Mr. Hazarika introduced the concept of the Boat Clinics to new team members and shared updates on the latest developments in the program, including a review of the program by Amsterdam’s Vrije University, set to begin in March 2023. He also acknowledged the importance of boat safety, reminding the teams to be vigilant at all times.
Special Advisor Dr. Milan Barooah took the opportunity to emphasize the importance of proper documentation and the need to prioritize family planning to improve the overall health status of women. He also touched upon the technical aspects of ANC, PNC, RI, and the importance of ensuring the safety of the teams.
Trustee Mr. HS Das spoke highly of the Boat Clinic Program, recognizing its success both nationally and internationally. He attributed this success to the hard work and dedication of each team member and emphasized the importance of good documentation for better assessments, dissemination, and research.
The meeting also featured presentations from the District Programme Officers of the Boat Clinics, which provided a platform for open discussions with the Managing Trustee and PMU. The Accounts team presented on account keeping and emphasized the need to streamline processes, address gaps and shortcomings, and improve rates of immunization among children and women, the primary focus group of the program. Overall, the C-NES Review Meeting was a valuable opportunity to review progress, identify areas for improvement, and discuss plans for the future of the program.
Launch of New Boat Clinic in Kamrup District, Assam
On December 26th, 2022, a new boat clinic was officially launched in Kamrup district, Assam with the presence of renowned economist and columnist, Swaminathan Aiyar, and Professor Neeraj Kaushal of Columbia University. Mr. Aiyar, a philanthropist, had earlier donated six boats to C-NES, each named after members of his family.
The launch event, held at Futuri ghat in Kamrup rural district, was attended by several key individuals including Managing Trustee Sanjoy Hazarika, PMU members Mousumi Dowerah, Bhaswati Goswami, DPO Nalbari Parvez Rahman, and the Kamrup Boat Clinic team led by Sanvie Islam, DPO.
Following the launch, the visitors, accompanied by the C-NEs team, visited a health camp at the Bhokuwamari island village. However, due to the subsiding water levels, the boat was unable to reach the island and the team had to traverse two shallow channels and walk past corn fields to reach the village where the health camp was winding down. The children were given check-ups after school.
Bongaigaon Boat Clinic Receives Recognition
On October 12th, 2022, the Bongaigaon Boat Clinic was honored with the award for being the best performer in delivering healthcare services to remote island villages in the district. The award was presented to DPO Monjur H Mandal, who accepted it on behalf of the team, at the District Library Hall. The award was given by the MLA of the Bongaigaon constituency, Phani Bhushan Chaudhury.
Azim Premji Philanthropic Initiatives (APPI) visits Goalpara boat clinic
A two-person delegation from Azim Premji Philanthropic Initiatives (APPI) Pvt Ltd, Hyma Vadlamani and Pradyut Bhattacharjee, an Independent Development Consultant, visited a health camp hosted by the Goalpara Boat Clinic on October 19th, 2022.
During their visit, the team members interacted with the health team, observed the camp proceedings, and discussed the challenges and issues faced by the team and the communities they serve in remote islands. The socio-economic problems faced by the communities were also brought to light. The camp provided general checkups and routine immunizations to the beneficiaries.
The delegation expressed their appreciation for the challenging work of the health team. Hyma Vadlamani wrote in the visitor’s book, “Met the entire team of the Boat Clinic Unit. Exceptional commitment and dedicated service provided to the most vulnerable people of these char areas cut off from the mainland. The team of 15 people is doing such a precious service. NHM support for these kinds of last mile solutions is commendable. There seems to be a need for a boat ambulance. Wishing the team the best…”
From the Field
Goalpara Boat Clinic Visit by PMU
On October 21st, 2022, Program Manager Ashok Rao and Assistant Program Manager Mousumi Duara visited the Goalpara Boat Clinic. During the visit, the two interacted with the clinic’s team members, evaluated the team’s performance while a camp was being held at Shailadhara, and collected feedback from both the team and community. Additionally, the PMU visited a location where three boat clinics are being constructed as part of the Hospital Ship Program funded by CryptoIndia.
Successful Delivery by Barpeta Boat Clinic Unit II
On October 26th, 2022, the Barpeta Boat Clinic Unit II successfully delivered a baby. Promoting institutional deliveries and providing prenatal and postnatal checks is a top priority for health teams, particularly in a state like Assam where maternal mortality rate is 205, one of India’s worst, and infant mortality rate is high. The team was conducting a regular check-up at Ramapara Pam Char when they were alerted of the need for immediate medical attention. The delivery was conducted by Dr. Jemima Akhtar with assistance from ANM Himamani Talukdar. Both the mother and child are in good health following the delivery.
Immunization at Niz-Tintikia
The Sonitpur Boat Clinic team set off for a routine immunization session at Niz-Tintikia on October 25th, 2022. With the arrival of winter and the river water levels lowering, larger boats are unable to reach the island villages. Therefore, the health teams make use of country boats to reach their destination.
Bongaigaon Boat Clinic holds educational session for children
On 18th October 2022, the Bongaigaon Boat Clinic team held an educational session on preventing diarrhea for children at Number 6 Bahir island village. The children attentively listened to the information provided by the team.
Bringing Healthcare to Remote Island Villages: The Journey of the Dibrugarh Boat Clinic
A look at the Health and Routine Immunization Camps organized by the Dibrugarh Boat Clinic in remote island villages of Mesaki, Udaipur, Tengabari, and Sarisuti in the district. The Boat Clinic program in Dibrugarh dates back to May 2005, and it has received support from the district administration. The first boat in the fleet, the Boat Clinic Akha, is currently undergoing major repairs, so the team has been using smaller boats to conduct the camps since 2019.
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