WHO / ZAMBIA EAR AND HEARING CARE

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20-Sep-2021 00:05:12
Today one in five people worldwide live with hearing loss. In Zambia, five ear nose and throat (ENT) specialists and one audiologist are serving a population of 17 million. Zambia is addressing this gap through a special pilot programme to train health workers on primary ear and hearing care. After finishing the training in 2019 Nurse Carol Sinkende has helped over 600 patients with screening and treatments. WHO

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STORY: WHO / ZAMBIA EAR AND HEARING CARE
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SOURCE: WHO
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LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 08 FEBRUARY 2021, KAPIRI MPOSHI DISTRICT, ZAMBIA

SHOTLIST:

1.Various shots, Alice, a farmer and mother of 3-year-old Memory, walking from her house to the Lukomba Rural Health Centre to seek care for her child
2.SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“What made me realize that the child was not feeling well is that she would complain when she does this to her ears. Even when bathing her, when you touch the ears, she would cry. Next, she started releasing pus from the ears.”
3. Various shots, Alice, Memory and other patients waiting for Nurse Carol Sinkende
4. Various shots, Carol calling Alice and Memory in for Memory to be examined
5. SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“I wanted to go find medicine. That’s when I was told that there’s a nurse in Pula who is working on ears. Without hesitation I went to the clinic. That’s how she checked her up, found her with ear problems and gave her medicine.”
6. Various shots, Carol testing Memory’s hearing
7. Various shots, Carol examining Memory
8. Various shots, Carol tidying her otoscope after Memory’s ear examination
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Nurse Carol Sinkende:
“Memory Chisenga has been my patient since December last year when the child was brought with the issue of chronic suppurative otitis media. So the child had a perforation in her left ear, but ever since I have started seeing this child, I have noticed that the perforation has gone down due to the medication that we are giving which is an indication that the child is actually getting better and getting well.”
10. Various shots, Carol cleaning Memory’s ear
11. Various shots, Carol giving medicine to Alice for Memory
12. SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“Carol’s clinic works so well, it has really helped us. Before the help, we could not manage to go to Kapiri in a car.”
13. Various shots, Carol getting ready for the clinic
14. SOUNDBITE (English) Nurse Carol Sinkende:
“I intend to continue working in this field and to further my studies, not just for the academics, but in order for me to have influence and to be relevant enough to have an impact in policy making and decision making over people who have hearing impairment and loss. I hope to make a difference in the lives of these people.”
15. Various shots, Kapiri Mposhi town

STORYLINE:

Today one in five people worldwide live with hearing loss. Nearly 80 per cent of the people affected live in countries lacking adequate ear and hearing care services.

SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“What made me realize that the child was not feeling well is that she would complain when she does this to her ears. Even when bathing her, when you touch the ears, she would cry. Next, she started releasing pus from the ears.”

Alice and Memory live in Chambeshi, a rural area from which access to specialized health services is complicated.

In Zambia, only five ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialists and one audiologist serve a population of 17 million. To address this gap, the Ministry of Health of Zambia launched its first-ever National ENT strategic plan, as part of its five-year health plan (2017-2021), in response to the World Health Assembly resolution on prevention of deafness and hearing loss.

SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“I wanted to go find medicine. That’s when I was told that there’s a nurse in Pula who is working on ears. Without hesitation I went to the clinic. That’s how she checked her up, found her with ear problems and gave her medicine.”

Through a training plan based on WHO primary ear and hearing care manuals, 28 nurses, 43 clinical officers and 133 community health workers from 92 facilities have been trained over the past 18 months.

Nurse Carol Sinkende completed the training in 2019. Since then, she has helped over 600 patients with screenings and treatments. Three year-old Memory is one of them.

SOUNDBITE Nurse Carol Sinkende:
“Memory Chisenga has been my patient since December last year and when the child was brought with the issue of chronic suppurative otitis media. So the child had a perforation in the left ear but ever since I have started seeing this child, I have noticed that the perforation has gone down due to the medication that we are giving which is an indication that the child is actually getting better and getting well.”

Before Carol started to receive patients in a rural health facility, people had to travel to the closest city of Kapiri Mposhi to seek care and go to the hospital. Now the rural population of the district has access to hearing care and the word is starting to spread. Nurses such as Carol provide outreach services to communities who may not know about specific health services such as hearing assessments and ear examinations.

SOUNDBITE (Bemba) Memory’s mother, Alice:
“Carol’s clinic works so well, it has really helped us. Before the help, we could not manage to go to Kapiri in a car.”

Carol was working in a telecommunication company and became a nurse after the loss of her mother.

SOUNDBITE (English) Nurse Carol Sinkende:
“I intend to continue working in this field and to further my studies, not just for the academics, but in order for me to have influence and to be relevant enough to have an impact in policy making and decision making over people who have hearing impairment and loss. I hope to make a difference in the lives of these people.”
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