This is Sam, who spends most of his his nights fishing on Lake Malawi. It's a tough and dangerous life for a fisherman. But not all the dangers are on the water. Once on dry land, Sam, along with other fisherman, finds beer to drink at the local home-brewing establishment. Sam will then head to a grass hut where he sleeps in crowded conditions, together with other fisherman. This is the life which repeats every day.
Sam is a client of Lifeline Malawi. He was recently diagnosed with 3+ Tuberculosis (TB) and is now on intensive TB medicines. This is not the first time Sam has been diagnosed. He relapsed because of previous poor adherence and compliance to therapy. He does not realize that he is a high risk to his fellow fisherman.
Because of his poor adherence to taking his medicine, our staff made a follow-up visit with Sam at his village. Here they gave health talks to everyone speaking about TB infections, how to get a diagnosis, explaining the treatment and prevention, plus offering HIV and TB testing. Often, TB and HIV go together.
|Staff in the midst of testing and counselling
To get to Sam's remote village, our staff first drove for 40 minutes in our ambulance over pot-holed dirt roads. The road eventually became impassible. They traveled the remainder of the way by foot, walking for 30 minutes in the hot sun and carrying their supplies. Once at the village, they began their work of educating, offering TB and HIV screening, and most importantly, taking sputum samples from Sam's close contacts.
Further follow-up will be needed during future visits. In addition, the staff noted the poor sanitary conditions at the village. Something more the villagers will need our help with. We are proud of our staff, thankful for their compassion, and we greatly appreciate the immense effort they make to care for all the people in the community, even travelling to these remote areas