Spreading awareness

MAMA Angel paid a visit to Yeoville Clinic last Thursday at the invitation of the medical students who spend a morning a week educating the patients.

MAMA Angel paid a visit to Yeoville Clinic last Thursday at the invitation of the medical students who spend a morning a week educating the patients.

The students from Wits University are doing a survey of people's understanding of HIV-Aids and TB education. The third-year students were on rotation for the last six weeks as part of their studies.

They asked Mama Angel to visit with goodies to encourage their patients. Mama Angel came bearing food parcels for 80 people.

"We have found that people do one test, either for TB or HIV and not both," said one of the students, Morgan Lucas.

"They do not do both because they say the queue is too long or because they do not know whether it would be better to check for both."

Overcrowded

Lucas said the patients lived in overcrowded homes with three to five families sharing a home. TB spreads quickly in such conditions. About 50percent of the patients are unemployed. About 7000 people call at the clinic a month.

"Some of the patients understand and know every thing about their illness. Others have a vague understanding or have no clue."

Sister Ella Veyi, the manager of the clinic, said the students were very helpful as they deal with the community awareness aspect.

"They plan and consult with us on community outreach and which issues we feel should be highlighted. Patients listen to them because they are new faces," Veyi said.

She said the education project had created awareness about the two viruses and made patients come early for detection.

"We send our many thanks to Sowetan and its readers for showing us such humanity. This encourages not only us, the students, but also the Yeoville Clinic community to spread this act of kindness," said Vuyelwa Obose, who wrote to Mama Angel for the group.

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